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Beside  Old  Hearth-Stones 



AUTHOR    OF    "beneath    OLD    ROOFTREES  "    "GLIMPSES    OF    OLD    NEW    ENGLAND 
life"    "history    of    BEDFORD"    ETC. 

The  stranger  at  my  fireside  cannot  see  the  fortns  I  see, 

Nor  hear  the  sounds  I  hear  ; 
He  but  perceives  ivhat  is  ;   while  unto  me 

All  that  has  been  is  visible  and  clear. 

Longfellow's  Haunted  Houses. 



Copyright,  1897,  by  Lee  and  Shepaf 

All  rights  reserved. 

Beside  Old  Hearth-Stones 

TYPOGRAPHY    BY    C.    J.     PETERS    *    SON,    BOSTON. 








O  for  the  swords  of  former  time, 
O  for  the  men  who  bore  them. 

When  arm''dfor  right,  they  stood  sublime, 
A  nd  tyrants  crouch'd  before  them. 


';    i- 

:,  e-^ 


In  this  volume,  as  in  the  first  of  the  series,  I 
have  endeavored  to  bring  to  light  some  of  the 
obscure  movements  of  the  early  patriots. 

The  search  for  these  has  called  me  to  the  outer 
circle  of  the  battlefield  of  the  opening  Revolution, 
where  footprints  of  the  minute-men  have  escaped 
the  eye  of  the  tourist. 

I  desire  to  acknowledge  the  continued  courtesy 
of  the  members  of  the  families  now  occupying  the 
old  farms  from  which  their  ancestors  went  oitt 
determined  to  have  liberty  or  death. 

In  offering  this  volume  to  the  public,  it  is  with 
a  sincere  desire  that  all  descendants  of  the  early 
patriots,  whether  located  on  the  old  homesteads 
or  in  homes  far  distant  from  New  England,  may 
have  a  just  appreciation  of  the  cost  of  the  glorious 
heritage  of  freedom  to  which  they  are  born. 

It  is  my  purpose  to  continue  this  search,  and  I 
shall  be  glad  to  receive  any  suggestions  whereby 
better  results  may  be  obtained  for  the  promotion 
of  good  citizenship. 



Chapter  I.  —  pagk 

Lexington   Alarm   in   Northern   Middlesex  .      .      ,      .      .  I 

Groton   Plantation 2 

Groton   Patriots  on   April    19,  1775   .......  4 

In  Camp   at   Cambridge        .........  5 

The  Death-Koll  at   Punker   Ili'.l 5 

The   Prescott    Family 6 

Champney   Mouse 7 

Grave  of  Captain   Abram   ChiUl 9 

Chapter  II.  — 

Origin   of   Shirley  and   Pcppcrell II 

Colonel   William   Prescott II 

Reverend  Joseph  Emerson ,  14 

Pepperell's   Relief  for   Boston   in    1760 15 

Town  and  Church   Records 15 

Patriotic  Acts  in   Pepperell 19 

Chapter  III.  — 

The   Prescott   Family 21 

,       Prescott  Homestead 23 

Echoes  from  its  Wood-Capped  Hills     ......  25 

Society  of  the  Cincinnati 25 

Connection   with  Governor   Roger  Wolcott      ....  26 

Alliance   with  the  Linzee   Family 27 

Characteristics  of  Colonel  William  Prescott     ....  30 

Chapter  IV.  — 

Rev,  Charles  Babl)idge  gives  the  General  Report  of  the 
Battle  of  Bunker  Hill  as  he  heard  it  from  the  Old 

Soldiers 34 


Chapter  IV.  (^Continued) —  pagf. 

The  Preacher  in  Camp  ....,.,...=  36 

Pepperell's  Dead  at  Bunker  Hill      ...,,.-.  36 

Colonel  Prescott's  Grave     ......,     =      >.  38 

Graves  of  Other  Heroes      ...                      .      .      .      =  39 

Lieutenant  Joseph   Spaulding  ...  ,41 

The  Sword  of  Bunker  Hill      ......  44 

Chapter  V.  — 

Rev.  Charles  Babbidge's  Experience  with  Old  Soldiers 

of  the    Revolution 46 

Thomas  Paine's  "  Common  Sense" 46 

No  Government   Homes  for  Veterans  of  the  War  .      .  47 

Military   Service   of   Harvard  College      ......  49 

Story  of   Edmund   Bancroft 50 

Burgoyne's  Officers  and   their  Dogs        ......  50 

Story  of   Edmund   Blood 53 

Chapter  VI.  — 

Pepperell,  cY?///?//z/(v/ 55 

Williams's  Place 55 

Parker  Honiestead 5^ 

The  Plough  in  the  Furrow 5^ 

Shattuck  Family 57 

Blood  Family 57 

Warner  Home 61 

Jewett's  Bridge •  61 

"  Paugus  John" 02 

Chapter  VII.  — 

First  Settlers  of  Shirley 70 

Longley  and  Hazen 70 

Longley  Homestead 77 

Story  of   "Will  the  Miller" 78 

Joshua  Longley  and  Bridget  Melvin      .      .                 .      .  80 

Hon.  George  S.  Boutwell  as  a  Schoolmaster  ....  83 

Holden  Family 87 

Chapter  VIII.— 

Shirley,  continued      .......-.•••  88 


Chapter  VIII.  {Counnncd) —  page 

John  Holden,  the  Boy  Fifer   ....'.....  88 

Oliver   Holden,  the  Composer  of   "Coronation"      .      .  91 

The  Meeting-House  a  Magazine 94 

Gift  of  Madam  Lydia  Hancock 96 

Bounty  Coat 97 

Chapter  IX.  — 

Story  of  the  Town  of  Hollis,  N.H.        ......  loi 

Movements  of  Hollis  Patriots loi 

At  Old  Homesteads 103 

Evil  Work  of  a  Tory  Woman 108 

Hollis  Gun-Makers no 

Chapter  X. — 

Hollis,  continued 113 

The  Worcester  Home 114 

The  Lexington  Alarm  at  the  Worcester  Door     .      .      .  114 

Town  Meeting  called 116 

Death-RoU  at  Bunker  Hill 118 

Equipments  lost  in  the  Battle  of  June    17,  1775      •     •  "9 

Call  from  General  Sullivan 121 

Boy  Soldiers 122 

The  Worcester  Family  in  the  World 124 

Thanksgiving  Day  at  the  Okl   Home 124 

Chapter  XI.  — 

Hollis,  continued 126 

Tenney  Homestead 126 

Deacon  Enoch  Jewett  Colburn 128 

Washington's  Soldiers  make  Maple-Sugar  for  the  Army,  129 

Whole  Families  in  the  War 129 

The  Nevens  Boulder 131 

Schoolteachers'   Pay  in  the   Revolution 135 

The  Old  Burying-Ground 135 

Chapter  XII.  — 

John  Colburn  tells  his  Father's  Story  of  the  Northern 

Campaigns 139 

Burgoyne's  Alliance  with  Indians 140 


Chapter  XII.   {Continued) —  page 
King  George  III.  hires  the  Germans  to  fight   the   Pro- 
vincials         144 

Chapter  XIII.  — 

Prisoners  of  War  in  America 146 

Journey  to  Cambridge ......147 

Provincial  Barracks  again  occupied 148 

Honor  among  Prisoners  of  War 149 

The  Baroness  tells  her  Story  .........  1 54 

"Tory  Row" 154 

Route  from  Saratoga  to  Cambridge 161 

Chapter  XIV. — 

Baron  and  Baroness  Riedesel 164 

German  Allies 164 

Start  from  Germany 164 

The  Baroness  at  the  Court  of  King  George  III.     .     .  168 

Reception  in  America .171 

Women   follov^^  the  Army 174 

Chapter  XV.  — 

Danvers .  175 

First  Settlers 175 

Home  of  Colonel  Jeremiah  Page .  176 

Office  of  Governor  Thomas  Gage 179 

Family  Recollections  of  Last  Governor  under  the  Crown,  180 

Origin  of  Lucy  Larcom's  Poem,  "A  Gambrel  Roof,  '  183 

The  Lexington  Alarm 186 

Burial   of    Danvers  Heroes   killed  at   Menotomy,  April 

19,  1775 s     ...  189 

The  Bell  Tavern 191 

Chapter  XVI.  — 

Danvers,  continued 194 

Moses  Porter's  Homestead 194 

Story  of  his  Patriotism I95 

Patriotic  Women  work  for  the  Soldiers 196 

Home  of  Deacon  Putnam,  who  led  a  Company  on  April 

19,  1775 19:^ 


Chapter  XVI.   {Continued^ —  page 

Danvers   Ministers  in  the   Fight 198 

General   Israel  Putnam 199 

The   Putnam   Home  and   Family 200 

Baptism  of  Israel  Putnam 200 

Story  by   "Old  Put's"   Great-Granddaughter       .      .      .  206 

Chapter  XVII.  — 

Danvers,  contiiiiied 209 

King  Hooper  and  Governor  Gage 210 

Camp  of  the  Enemy 213 

Hoi  ton  Family 214 

Samuel  Holton's  Letter  to  Daniel   Putnam     .      .      .      .  217 

King  George's  Whipping-Post 215 

Washington's  Letter  to  Major  Lowe 220 

Major-General  Gideon  Foster 222 

List  of  Eight  Danvers  Companies 221 

Chapter  XVIII. — 

The   Story   of  Dill,  a  Negro  Slave  in  the   Revolution   .  224 

Chapter  XIX. — 

Chelmsford  and  Early  Patriots 238 

Early  Means  of  Protection  from  the   Enemy  ....  239 

Old  Garrisons 240 

The  Patriot  Preacher 240 

Story  of  Henry  S.  Perham 244 

Positive  Acts  of  the  Chelmsford   Patriots 245 

Relief  to  Boston  Sufferers 247 

Lexington  Alarm 249 

Mr.  George  Spaulding  tells  his  Grandfather's  Story     .  249 

Patriots  too  much  in  Haste  to  stop  for  Prayer  ...  250 

Journal  of  Reverend  Ebenezer  Bridge 251 

Chapter  XX.  — 

Footprints  of  the  Patriots  of  the  Revolution  in  Lowell,  261 

Bowers  Family  Homestead  of  Two  Hundred  Years     .  262 

Story  of  Ford  Homestead 265 

Captain  John  Ford's  Descendant  tells  the  Story  of  the 

Patriot  Miller 266 


Chapter  XX.   {Coutiuned ) —  page 

Captain  Ford's  Journal  in  the  Northern  Campaign  of  i  776  269 

List  of  Patriots  preserved  by  Captain   Ford    ....  273 

Story  of  Father  of  President   Franklin   Pierce      .      .      .  275 

Chapter  XXI.  — 

Old  Hearth-Stones  in   Chelmsford 276 

Perham  Homestead,  where  Nine  Generations  of  the  Fam- 
ily have  lived 277 

Ten  Generations  of  vSpauldings  on   the  Old   Farm   .      .  278 

The  Old  Garret  of  the  Spaulding  House 28 1 

Eleven  Generations  of  Fletchers   on  the  Old   Farm       .  292 

Hayward  Home  the  Old  Garrison 283 

Old  Home  of  the  Byams  since   1655 285 

Thomas  Henchman  and  the  Warren   Family  ....  286 

The  Burying-Ground 296 

Chapter  XXH.  — 

Chelmsford,  continued 316 

Contagion   from  the  Army 316 

Formation  of  the  Government  by  the  Patriots    .      .      .  318 

Story  of  a  Patriot   Spinner 321 

Peter  Brown  writes  to  his  Mother  from  Cambridge  Camp,  323 

Miss  Susan  Brown  tells  the  Story  of  her  Grandfather,  327 

The  First  Blood  at  Bunker  Hill 332 

Chapter  XXHI.  — 

A  Boston   Family  takes  Refuge  in  Chelmsford    .      .      .  334 

The  Town  of  Boston  after  the  Siege 334 

Chapter  XXIV.  — 

Four  Emersons,   Patriot  Preachers  of  the  Revolution  .  344 

Ancestry 346 

Letter   from   Reverend  Samuel   Moody 348 

Reverend  Daniel  Emerson  in  French  War      ....  351 

Reverend  Joseph  Emerson  in  the  Army    .....  359 

Courtship  of  the  Minister 359 

Reverend  William  Emerson  of  Concord     .....  362 

Reverend  John  Emerson  and  the  Tories 364 


Sidney  Craige  Perham,  Ninth  Generation,  by  the  old  Hearth- 
Stone       Fyontispiece 

Stone    marking    Birthplace    of    Colonel    William    Prescott, 

Groton Page  6 

Champney  House,  Groton 7 

Monument   on   Site   of    the    Meeting-House   in    the   Mother 

Town 20 

Prescott  Homestead,  Pepperell 25 

Swords  of  Colonel  William  Prescott  and  Captain  John  Lin- 
zee      28 

Tablet  seen  in  the  Mother  Town 30 

Rev.  Charles  Babbidge 32 

Fac-Simile  of  Page  —  Pepperell  Church  Records  ....  37 

Grave  of  Rev.  Joseph  Emerson,  Pepperell 38 

Grave  of  Colonel  William  Prescott,  Pepperell 39 

Lieutenant  Joseph  Spaulding's  Commission       .....  43 

The  Sword  of  Bunker  Hill 44 

Discharge  of  Edmund  Blood 53 

The  Blood  Homestead 54 

Old  Parker   Plough ,  56 

Colonel  Shattuck's  Home,  Pepperell 58 

Colonel  Samuel  P.  Shattuck 62 

Mrs.  Samuel  P.  Shattuck 63 

Pepperell  Magazine 68 

Edmund   H.  N.   Blood,   Pepperell 69 

Hazen  Home,   Shirley 71 

Shirley  Oak 74 

Shirley  Schoolhousj 83 

A  Battered  Seat  from  Shirley  Schoolhouse 84 



Old  Home,   Shirley Page  85 

Longley  Ball,   and   Shirley   Relics  of  the   Revolution       .      ,  95 

Longley  Well 98 

W.   Shirley 100 

John  Colburn 102 

Bunker  Hill  Monument 119 

Worcester  Homestead,   Hollis,  N.H. 123 

Jesse  and  Sarah  Worcester 124 

Hollis  Training  Field 125 

Tenney  Homestead,  Hollis,  N.H 127 

Nevens's  Boulder 138 

Hessian  Tobacco  Box 145 

Baroness  Riedesel 153 

Apthorp  House,  Caml)ridge,  where  Burgoyne  was  imprisoned,  158 

Burgoyne's  Candlesticks 161 

Colonel  Jeremiah  Page   Home,   Danvers 176 

Governor  Gage's  Office 179 

Page   Garrett,   Danvers 182 

Danvers  Monument,   Peabody 190 

Birthplace  of  General  Israel   Put  nam 201 

Mary  (Waldo)  Webber,  Great  Granddaughter  of  "  Old  Put  "  205 

Scions  of  Putnam  Tree  in  the  Fifth  Generation   ....  207 

King  Hooper  House,  Danvers 211 

Dill's  Daughter,  Anstiss 235 

St.   Peter's  Church  at  Salem 236 

Chelmsford  Monument   (Revolutionary) 258 

Bowers  Homestead,  Lowell 262 

Captain  Ford  Homestead,   Lowell 265 

Perham  Homestead,  Chelmsford     .      .      .     ' 277 

Spaulding  Home,  Chelmsford 279 

Spaulding  Watch,   used  at  Bunker   Hill 280 

Mrs.    Shedd 282 

ilayward  Garrison,   Chelmsford 2S4 

Byam  Home,  Chelmsford 285 

Captain  Bill  Fletcher's  House 292 

Major  Thomas  Hinchman's  Military  Order 297 

Hinchman  Stone,  Chelmsford 297 


Cornelius  Waldo  Stone Page  298 

Minister's  Table,   Chelmsford 300 

Tablet  to  the   Memory  of  the  Town  Clerk,   Chelmsford       .  302 

Clark  Stones,   Chelmsford 303 

Clark  Tavern,   Lowell 305 

Parker  Homestead,   Lowell 307 

Commission  to  Benjamin  Parker,  Chelmsford 309 

Parker  Garrett  Treasures,  Lowell 314 

Fletcher  Stone  in  Chelmsford 317 

Polly  Carter's  Reel 321 

South  College  (Massachusetts  Hall) 327 

Dudley  Foster 333 

Birthplace  of  Asa  Pollard,   Billerica 333 

Rand  Pincushion 338 

Mary  Rand  Slippers 343 

Emerson  Autographs 346 

Joseph  Emerson's  Chair,   Pepperell 350 



So  through  tlie  night  rode  Paul  Revere, 

And  so  through  the  night  went  his  cry  of  alarm 

To  every  Middlesex  village  and  farm, — 

A  cry  of  defiance  and  not  of  fear, 

A  voice  in  the  darkness,  a  knock  at   the  door, 

And  a  word  that  shall  echo  forevermore. 




APRIL     19,     1775.  IN    CAMP    AT    CAMBRIDGE.  




No  time  was  lost  in  extending  the  "  Lexington 
Alarm,"  and  so  thorough  had  been  the  planning 
that  but  little  or  no  time  was  wasted  in  the  most 
distant  towns  before  the  patriots  started  for  the 
relief  of  the  distressed.  Northern  Middlesex  had 
given  no  uncertain  sound  during  all  the  time  when 
the  troubles  were  culminating.  The  older  citi- 
zens were  familiar  with  the  war  cry,  many  of  them 
having   repeatedly   rushed   to   arms   in   the    early 


wars;  and  the  fireside  tales  were  those  of  personal 
sufferings  in  the  Indian  troubles  and  French  wars. 
In  many  a  home  was  reference  made  to  the  family 
record  in  the  well-worn  Bible,  and  the  pine  torch 
lighted  in  order  that  the  youngest  listener  might 
be  duly  impressed  by  reading  for  himself  such 
entries  as  "Killed  at  Crown  Point ;  Died  at  Cham- 
plain  ;  Killed  by  Indians  at  Fort  George."  Ticon- 
deroga  and  Crown  Point  were  household  words, 
kept  vividly  in  mind  by  the  old  musket  that  had 
done  service  in  that  well-known  region.  No  fairy 
tales  found  listeners  in  these  homes  ;  for  the  siege 
of  Louisburg  and  the  destruction  of  the  peaceful 
Acadian  villages,  scenes  in  which  these  people 
had  a  part,  furnished  ample  subject  for  twilight 

There  was  a  tract  of  land,  more  than  thirty 
miles  inland,  granted  to  Dean  Winthrop  and 
others,  and  incorporated  as  early  as  1655  by  the 
name  of  Groton.  It  was  named  for  the  home  of 
the  Winthrops,  in  Groton,  England.  Seven  years 
passed  before  the  record  appears  of  the  erection 
of  that  all-important  building,  a  meeting-house, 
and  of  the  election  of  those  well-known  New 
Enorland  functionaries,  selectmen.  These  settlers, 
like  other  pioneers  whom  we  delight  to  honor, 
exemplified  true  Christian  heroism.  With  their 
minister.  Rev.  Samuel  Willard,  they  faced  the 
hardships  of  frontier  life  with  a  resignation  hard 
to   be   understood   in  these    days    of    luxury    and 


comfort.  ''They  lived  on  the  rough  edge  of  civ- 
ilization ;  and  nothing  stood  between  them  and 
an  unbroken  wilderness."  Christian  civilization 
was  apparent,  when  King  Philip's  war  broke  out, 
and  sorrow  settled  upon  the  place.  The  greater 
part  of  the  houses  were  destroyed,  including  the 
meeting-house  ;  some  of  the  people  were  killed, 
and  others  carried  into  captivity.  Although  forced 
to  abandon  the  undertaking  for  a  while,  those 
people  heroically  took  up  the  burden  again,  and 
went  on  successfully.  While  it  was  the  descend- 
ants and  successors  of  the  pioneers  who  indelibly 
stamped  their  names  on  the  records  of  this  set- 
tlement during  the  later  Indian  troubles  and  with 
the  French,  they  manifested  no  half-hearted  spirit 
in  the  repeated  emergencies. 

Territorially  Groton  admitted  of  many  divisions; 
and  the  natural  increase  of  population,  together 
with  the  influx  from  the  lower  towns,  led  to  the 
formation  of  several  new  districts  or  townships  be- 
fore the  beginning  of  hostilities  with  the  mother 
country.  Distance  only  prevented  these  patriots 
from  having  a  share  in  the  well-known  scenes  of 
April  19  ;  but  no  better  record  was  made  at  camp 
in  Cambridge,  and  in  battle  at  Bunker  Hill,  than 
is  found  to  the  honor  of  these  people  of  northern 


In  my  search  for  hidden  footprints  in  the  town 
of  Groton,  I  was  conducted  to  the  home  of  Mrs. 


Abigail  Moors,  who  in  her  ninetieth  year  was 
mistress  of  her  own  home.  Referring  to  her 
father,  Imlah  Parker,  a  soldier  of  the  Revolution, 
this  interesting  woman  emphatically  said,  ''I  have 
always  thought  he  was  the  nicest  man  that  ever 
lived."  With  memory  undimmed,  she,  the  last  of 
a  family  of  nine  children,  lives  in  the  full  enjoy- 
ment of  filial  affection,  bearing  testimony  to  the 
fact  that  the  true  parent  is  the  real  patriot. 

It  has  been  shown  in  ''Beneath  Old  Roof  Trees" 
that  the  people  of  Groton  received  no  encourage- 
ment from  their  pastor  towards  resistance  to  Brit- 
ish aggression  ;  in  fact,  if  they  had  followed  their 
minister,  they  would  all  have  been  classed  with  the 
Tories.  But  from  the  spring  of  1765,  when  the 
odious  Stamp  Act  was  passed,  they  had  been  out- 
spoken in  the  interests  of  the  Colonies,  regardless 
of  their  spiritual  leader.  Two  companies  of  min- 
ute-men were  enlisted  in  the  town  agreeably  to 
the  recommendation  of  the  First  Provincial  Con- 
gress, in  its  resolve  of  October  26,  1774,  at  Con- 
cord. The  alarm  of  April  19  was  quickly  met  by 
the  response  of  these  companies,  under  Captains 
Henry  Farwell  and  Asa  Lawrence. 

The  alarm  of  the  previous  day,  already  explained 
in  this  series,  had  started  Captain  Nathan  ^  Corey 
and  other  Groton  men  to  Concord  in  advance  of 
the  companies,  and  hence  given  Groton  some  repre- 
sentatives at  Old  North  Bridge.     Two  companies 

^  Not  Aaron. 


of  militia  followed  the  minute-men  on  the  19th,  and 
all  gathered  at  Cambridge  before  that  April  day 
had  closed.  There  is  sufficient  reason  for  believ- 
ing that  General  Artemas  Ward  found  the  Groton 
men  to  be  faithful  soldiers.  He  had  a  special  in- 
terest in  the  old  families  of  that  town.  His  wife, 
Sarah  Trowbridge,  to  whom  he  was  married  in 
1750,  was  daughter  of  Rev.  Caleb  and  Hannah 
(Walter)  Trowbridge  of  Groton.  When  the  im- 
mortal scroll  of  June  17  was  made  up,  it  appeared 
that  Groton  had  suffered  great  loss.  Among  the 
dead  was  Sergeant  Benjamin  Prescott,  a  nephew 
of  Colonel  William  Prescott. 

The  following  names  appear  on  the  bronze  tab- 
lets at  Charlestown  :  — 

prescott's  regiment. 

Parker's  coiupany.  —  Peter  Fisk,  David  Kemp. 

Lawrence^ s  cojiipany. — James  Dodge,  Stephen  Foster, 
Abraham  Blood,  Benjamin  Wood,i  Simon  Hobart,  Robert 

FarweWs  coiupany.  —  Jonathan  Jenkins. 

Moors' s  coi?ipaiiy.  —  Sergeant  Benjamin  Prescott. 

Corey' s  company.  —  Chambers  Corey. 

Although  the  Colonel  Prescott  homestead  was 
lost  to  Groton  through  the  dismembership  of  the 
town,  the  name  has  been  closely  identified  with  it. 
Various  members  of  the  family  are  notable  in  its 

^  See  Pepperell  Death-roll.      Chapter  IV.  of  this  volume. 


The  first  to  appear  in  the  town  was  Jonas,  son 
of  John  the  immigrant,  who  came  to  this  country 
about  1640,  and  settled  at  Lancaster,  where  often, 
in  a  coat  of  mailed  armor,  he  appeared  to  the  trou- 
blesome Indians,  impressing  them  as  of  super- 
natural origin.  Jonac,  at  Groton,  was  a  captain  of 
the  yeomanry  militia  at  the  time  when  the  sav- 
ages were  committing  their  depredations.  Benja- 
min, a  son  of  Jonas,  was  born  in  1696,  and  was 
a  man  of  military  and  civil  distinction.  He  ob- 
tained lands  on  the  border-line  of  the  town.  A 
monument  standing  at  an  angle  of  the  road  near- 
ing  the  centre  of  Groton  tells  the  followino:  : 
"  Colonel  William  Prescott  Commander  of  the 
American  forces  at  the  Battle  of  Bunker  Hill,  was 
born  on  the  20th  of  February,  1726,  in  a  house 
which  stood  near  this  spot."  Brothers  of  Colonel 
William  were  Dr.  Oliver  and  Judge  James  Pres- 
cott, each  of  whom  honored  the  town  of  his  nativ- 
ity. One  of  the  selectmen  in  1775  was  Oliver 
Prescott  ;  Honorable  James  Prescott  was  a  mem- 
ber of  the  first,  second,  and  third  Provincial  Con- 
gress, and  of  the  Board  of  War  in  1776.  Oliver 
Prescott  was  a  member  of  the  Council  in  1777. 
The  family  was  also  represented  in  other  impor- 
tant positions  during  the  war ;  and  Honorable 
James  Prescott  was  the  representative  from  the 
town  in  the  first  General  Court  of  the  Common- 
wealth of  Massachusetts,  which  assembled  on 
Wednesday,   Octaber  25,    i7<So.      It   thus  appears 


that  the  heroism  of  John  the  immigrant  was  per- 
petuated in  his  descendants,  who  proved  them- 
selves to  be  true  patriots  and  good  citizens  in  the 
time  of  great  trial. 

Some  interesting  facts  are  here  added  in  regard 
to   the   personality  of   Colonel  William    Prescott, 

Champney  House,  Groton 

given  by  his  grandniece,  Mrs.  Sarah  (Chaplin) 
Rockwood,  to  Dr.  Samuel  A.  Green.  Her  father 
was  Rev.  Daniel  Chaplin,  D.D.,  of  Groton;  and 
her  mother  was  Susanna,  eldest  daughter  of  Judge 
James  Prescott,  brother  of  the  colonel.  She  was 
ten  years  of  age  when  the  hero  of  Bunker  Hill 


*'  She  describes  him  as  a  tall,  well-proportioned 
man,  with  blue  eyes  and  a  large  head.  He  usually 
wore  a  skull-cap  ;  and  he  parted  his  hair  in  the 
middle,  wearing  it  long  behind,  braided  loosely,  and 
tied  in  a  club  with  a  black  ribbon,  as  was  common 
in  those  days.  He  had  a  pleasant  countenance, 
and  was  remarkably  social  and  full  of  fun  and 
anecdotes.  He  was  dignified  in  his  manner,  and 
had  the  bearing  of  a  soldier."^ 

Authorities  agree  on  the  value  of  early  im- 
pressions ;  and  we  can  but  credit  this  description 
of  the  personal  appearance  of  Colonel  Prescott, 
for  it  was  indelibly  stamped  upon  the  youthful 
Sarah  Chaplin  when  sitting  upon  the  knee  of  the 
old  soldier.  She  attained  the  remarkable  age  of 
one  hundred  and  four  years. 

The  Champney  house  is  one  of  the  few  dwell- 
ings remaining  to  remind  us  of  the  patriots  of 
Groton  who  left  their  homes  in  exchange  for  the 
life  of  the  camp  and  field  of  battle. 

1  This  fact  in  regard  to  the  dress  of  the  hair  was  not  brought  to 
the  notice  of  the  sculptor,  William  W.  Story,  the  modeller  of  the 
Prescott  statue  at  Bunker  Hill. 


In  the  old  buryingrgroimcl  of  Groton  is  a  stone 
on  which  is  the  following  record  of  a  patriot  who 
was  born  at  Waltham  :  — 

"  \[an  lives  his  little  hour  and  Falls  too  oft  unheeded  dorvn.'''' 



Waltham  1741-1834.    93  Years. 

He  entered  the  army  in  the  French  War  at  the  age  of  17  years.     Was 
with  Gen.  Amherst  at  the  capture  of  Ticonderoga  and  Crown 
Point  in  1759.     He  was  a  Lieut,  among  tlie 
minute  men  and  aided  in  the  Concord  fight  and  tlie  Battle 
of  Bunker  Hill  in   1775.     Joining  Washington  he  was  one  of  the  Im- 
mortal Band  which  crossed  the  Delaware  Dec.  25,  1776,  and  turned 
the  tide  of  war  in  the  victories  of  Trenton  and  Princeton.     De- 
tached to  the  North  he  fought  in  the  two  battles  of  Still- 
water, and  witnessed  the  surrender  of  Burgoyne  in  1777. 
Rejoining  Washington  he  bore  equally  the  frosts 
of  Valley  Forge  and  the  Heats  of  Monmouth, 
in  177S.     Detailed  with  Gen.  W^ayne,  he  crowned  his 
military  career  by  heading  the  Infantry  as  oldest  Capt.  in  the 
gallant  capture  of  Stoney  Point  in  1779  where  he  received  the  only  wound 
that  marked  his  eventful  services. 

The  blood  of  our  fathers,  let  it  not  have  been  shed  in  vain 




"  Tell  ye  your  children  of  it,  and  let  your  children  tell  their  children, 
and  their  children  another  generation."  —  Joel  i.  3. 


ELL's  relief  for  boston  in  1760.  — COLONEL 

Among  the  towns  once  included,  either  whole 
or  in  part,  in  Groton  Plantation,  are  Pepperell  and 
Shirley.  Besides  being  offshoots  from  the  mother 
township,  they  had  other  early  and  later  interests 
in  common  which  make  it  almost  impossible  to 
separate  them  entirely.  It  was  a  custom  of  the 
early  days  of  the  Colony  for  a  town  to  become 
such  by  degrees.  In  many  cases  the  remote  set- 
tlers set  up  the  plea  of  the  great  distance  to  be 
travelled  to  get  to  the  meeting-house,  and  a  pre- 
cinct would  be  established  in  which  better  eccle- 
siastical advantages  were  enjoyed;  the  next  step 
was,  in  some  instances,  the  formation  of  a  district, 
which  gave  added  privileges  ;  and  then  followed 
the  right  of  sending  a  representative  to  the  Gene- 
ral Court,  when  the  fully  equipped  town  appeared 


upon  the  records. ^  Pepperell  passed  through  each 
of  these  preliminary  stages,  but  Shirley  was  at 
first  recognized  as  a  district  and  then  as  a  town. 
As  early  as  1742  '*  Groton  West  Parish  "  appeared 
in  the  records ;  but  it  was  not  until  eleven  years 
later  that  it  was  dignified  by  a  name  entirely  dis- 
tinct from  that  of  Groton,  and  still  later  before  it 
was  classed  as  a  town.  It  is  difficult  to  tell  when 
the  political  connection  with  the  mother  town  was 
severed ;  for  in  the  exigency  of  the  opening  Rev- 
olution, Pepperell,  as  other  districts,  had  its  own 
representative.  William  Prescott  was  the  district's 
representative  in  the  General  Court  convened  at 
Salem  on  Friday  the  seventh  day  of  October,  1774, 
by  order  of  Governor  Thomas  Gage,  and  which 
resulted  in  the  First  Provincial  Congress,  that  met 
at  Concord  on  the  eleventh.  When  duties  in  the 
field  required  the  presence  of  William  Prescott,  he 
was  succeeded  by  Edmund  Bancroft,  who  served 
in  the  second  and  third  Provincial  Congress. 

In  1753  Shirley  was  incorporated  as  a  district, 
without  having  taken  the  course  of  first  building  a 
meeting-house  and  settling  a  minister. 

In  following  the  plan  of  a  biographer,  I  have  at 
first  given  the  antecedents  of  these  towns  of  envi- 
able record  in  north-west  Middlesex,  and  next  turn 

1  During  the  reign  of  George  the  Second,  there  were  objections  on 
the  part  of  the  royal  authorities  to  forming  new  towns  in  the  New 
England  Colonies,  whereby  more  representatives  appeared  in  the 
local  government,  hence  districts  were  more  commonly  formed. 


to  the  origin  of  the  names  assigned  them.  The 
notable  officials  William  Shirley  and  William  Pep- 
perrell  are  closely  allied  in  our  Provincial  history  ; 
and  as  portions  of  Groton  Plantation  became  dis- 
tricts during  the  popularity  of  these  men,  it  was 
natural  that  their  names  should  be  perpetuated  in 
this  manner. 

William  Shirley  was  governor  of  the  Province 
from  August,  1741,  to  September,  1749.  He  was 
appointed  by  the  king  under  the  second  char- 
ter. It  was  during  this  period  that  the  south- 
westerly part  of  Groton  became  a  district,  and 
later  a  fully  equipped  town  ;  hence,  it  was  given 
the  name  of  Shirley  in  honor  of  the  governor. 

William  Pepperrell  of  Kittery,  Maine,  was  col- 
onel of  a  regiment  of  militia,  and  a  merchant  of 
great  success  and  popularity.  Being  well  and  fa- 
vorably known  in  Massachusetts  and  New  Hamp- 
shire, he  was  selected  by  Governor  Shirley  as 
commander  of  the  expedition  fitted  out  in  1745 
to  capture  the  fortress  of  the  French  at  Louis- 
burg,  Cape  Breton.  The  marvellous  success  of 
the  expedition  turned  public  attention  to  the  mer- 
chant commander,  and  no  honor  was  too  great  to 
be  conferred  upon  him  ;  hence  the  northern  part 
of  Groton,  first  called  ^^  Groton  West  Parish," 
when  becoming  a  town,  was  named  Pepperrell,  in 
honor  of  the  hero  of  Louisburg. 

The  facts  that  men  from  these  towns  were  in- 
cluded in  the  six  thousand  who  made  up  the  army 


in  command  of  Colonel  Pepperrell,  and  that  the 
minister  of  the  latter  town  was  a  chaplain  in  the 
expedition,  must  have  strengthened  the  desire  to 
name  the  town  Pepperrell.^  It  may  seem  extremely 
far-fetched  to  cite  the  part  of  these  towns  in  the 
capture  of  the  ''Gibraltar  of  America"  as  a  rea- 
son for  the  remarkable  record  of  the  later  patriots 
of  the  locality;  but  the  thirty  years  which  inter- 
vened between  the  experiences  at  Louisburg  and 
Lexington  could  not  have  effaced  the  record,  and 
with  such  a  spiritual  leader  as  had  the  town  of 
Pepperell  in  the  Rev.  Joseph  Emerson  the  fire 
of  patriotism  could  not  go  out.  In  his  sermon  to 
his  parishioners  in  the  spring  of  1758,  just  before 
starting  under  command  of  Captain  Thomas  Law- 
rence for  the  French  war,  this  patriot  preacher 
said  from  his  pulpit,  "  Let  it  never  be  said  of  a 
Pepperell  soldier  that  he  was  afraid  to  face  his 
enemies,  or  that  he  ever  turned  his  back  on 
them,  and  cowardly  deserted  the  cause  of  his 

The  name  of  Emerson  is  of  itself  enough  to 
give  the  town  of  Pepperell  an  honored  place  in 
the  annals  of  the  Colonies  ;  but  when  combined 
with  that  of  Prescott  there  is  a  union  of  strength 
which  must  have  exerted  an  influence  upon  all 
subsequent  generations  of  the  early  heroes.  It 
is  claimed  that  William   Prescott  was  one  of  the 

1  The  Pepperrell  family  repeated  the  "r."  The  same  form 
was  used  in  the   name   of  the  town   for  many  years. 


town's  representatives  at  Louisburi^,  and  it  is  cer- 
tain that  he  was  lieutenant  in  the  Provincial  troops 
sent  out  to  remove  the  French  neutrals  from  Nova 
Scotia  in  1755. 

While  we  may  deplore  this  measure  of  war,  we 
cannot  deny  the  patriotism  which  impelled  those 
who  responded  to  the  call.  While  our  emotions 
are  stirred  by  the  slightest  reference  to  those 
Acadian  villagers  ''  on  the  shores  of  the  Basin  of 
Minas,"  who,  *'  at  peace  with  God  and  the  world," 
were  swept  from  their  homes,  we  cannot  refrain 
from  according  honor  to  our  townsmen  who  were 
led  in  the  expedition,  and  also  rejoice  that  in  some 
measure  our  ancestors  atoned  for  the  wrong  by 
sharing  their  meagre  comforts  with  the  Evange- 
lines  who  were  left  at  their  doors. 

The  early  settlers  of  Pepperell  were  familiar 
with  the  hardships  of  frontier  life.  Rev.  Joseph 
Emerson,  who  became  their  minister  in  1746,  was 
accustomed  to  seeing  little  companies  of  his  pa- 
rishioners start  off  to  face  the  Indians  and  their 
Erench  allies  ;  fifteen  of  his  people  are  recorded 
as  having  perished  in  that  service  between  the 
years  1748  and  1756.  Under  the  judicious  leader- 
ship of  their  minister  their  hearts  were  softened 
by  sorrow  and  sacrifice,  and  they  were  ready  to 
share  their  hard  earnings  with  others  in  distress  ; 
a  notable  instance  being  shown  at  the  time  of 
Boston's  great  fire  of  March  20,  1760,  when  it  was 
estimated  that  the  loss  was  one  hundred  thousand 


pounds  sterling.      Rev.  Mr.  Emerson  made  the  fol- 
lowing record  in  the  church  book  :  — 

"  The  governor  Pownall  sent  Briefs  thro'  the  Province  for 
a  general  contribution,  accordingly  we  had  one  here  and  col- 
lected £6\  \is.  Oil.  Old  Tenor,  and  when  paid  the  following 
Receit  was  given. 

Boston,  i6///  April,  1760. 
Received  of  ye  Church  in  Pepperell,  whereof  the  Rev.  Mr. 
Joseph   Emerson   is  Pastor,  the  sum  of  sixty  four  pounds, 
twelve  shillings  old  tenor  for  ye  sufferers  in  the  late  fire. 

John   Phillips." 

With  the  many  publications  which  treat  of  the 
Revolutionary  period  at  our  command,  there  is  no 
way  in  which  the  patriot  of  to-day  may  become  so 
fully  impressed  by  the  moral  heroism  with  which 
each  town  met  its  share  of  suffering  and  made 
its  sacrifice,  as  by  carefully  studying  the  worn  yel- 
low leaves  of  the  records  of  the  town  meetings. 
There  each  successive  step  appears  in  all  its  sig- 
nificance, recorded  in  the  cramped  handwriting  of 
the  clerk,  in  many  cases  spelled  without  rule,  but 
unmistakable  in  meaning.  The  student  of  these 
files  cannot  fail  to  read  much  between  the  lines, 
and  detect  in  each  blot  and  period  a  spirit  of  de- 
termination that  knew  no  compromise. 

The  town  of  Pepperell  has  an  old  church  record 
in  addition  to  that  of  the  town  clerk,  which  gives 
added  testimony  to  its  patriotism.  Each  resolu- 
tion adopted  by  this  town,  if  not  in  the  language 
of  the  Committee  of  Correspondence  of  Boston, 


bears  the  impress  of  the  mind  of  the  patriot 
preacher,  whom  they  gladly  followed,  and  whose 
work  for  his  people  and  his  country  was  sealed  by 
his  death  in  October,  1775. 

In  viewing  early  pastoral  acts  from  the  present 
standpoint,  when  the  preaching  of  politics  from 
the  pulpit  is  at  the  risk  of  an  immediate  change 
in  spiritual  leaders,  it  is  difficult  to  understand 
much  that  took  place  in  Pepperell  and  other  towns 
during  the  contention  between  Parliament  and  the 
Provinces.  But  when  fully  realizing  the  exact  po- 
sition of  the  parson  of  that  time,  which  has  been 
set  forth  in  chapter  vii.  of  "  Beneath  Old  Roof 
Trees,"  one  may  more  easily  comprehend  the  sit- 
uation. Rev.  Mr.  Emerson,  the  zealous  apostle  of 
liberty  in  this  town,  found  a  faithful  co-worker  in 
William  Prescott,  one  of  his  parishioners,  who, 
besides  having  inherited  peculiar  talents  for  lead- 
ership, had  the  advantage  of  the  experience  of 
mature  life.  They  both  had  been  schooled  in  mili- 
tary service,  and  had  eyes  and  ears  to  detect  the 
first  indications  of  the  trouble  with  the  mother 
country.  But  while  this  preacher  was  bold  in  his 
denunciations  of  the  infringements  on  their  rights, 
he  was  equally  positive  in  declaring  from  his 
pulpit,  "  We  have  a  king  who  is  well  worthy  of 
our  affection  and  obedience."  They  saw  in  the 
Stamp  Act  an  occasion  for  positive  declaration. 
They  had  suffered  personally  in  the  king's  service 
against   the   French^    and    had    seen   the  stalwart 

REPEAL    OF   rilE   STAMP  ACT  \y 

young  men  of  the  town  go  out  from  their  midst 
to  return  no  more.  They  had  also  shared  in  the 
unusual  drain  upon  the  town's  treasury,  and  they 
most  naturally  deprecated  any  act  whereby  the 
Colonies  were  to  be  burdened  with  greater  taxes 
to  meet  the  king's  indebtedness.  Theirs  was  the 
voice  of  the  town  when,  in  October,  1765,  they  in- 
structed their  representative  in  the  General  Court, 
closing  thus  :  — 

"  As  the  trade  of  this  province  is  greatly  obstructed,  and 
the  people  labor  under  an  almost  insupportable  debt,  we 
expect  you  will  use  your  utmost  endeavors,  in  the  General 
Assembly,  that  the  monies  of  the  province  drawn  from  the 
individuals,  may  not  be  applied  to  any  other  uses,  under  any 
pretence  whatever,  than  what  is  evidently  intended  in  the  act 
for  supplying  the  province  treasury." 

The  repeal  of  the  Stamp  Act  was  an  occasion 
for  one  of  Rev.  Mr.  Emerson's  patriotic  sermons, 
which  was  printed ;  and  copies  of  it  are  now  treas- 
ured in  the  homes  of  the  descendants  of  those 
who  most  heartily  indorsed  its  sentiments.^  Mr. 
Emerson  called  the  repeal  one  of  the  great  deliv- 
erances in  English  history.  He  urged  his  people 
to  cultivate  in  their  minds  and  in  the  minds  of 
their  children  an  affection  for  their  mother  coun- 
try. He  said,  "  Let  us  have  reverence  for  and  be 
duly  subject  to  lawful  authority.  Government  is 
drawn  from  God,  though  the  practical  form  of  it 
is  left  to  the  prudence  and  discretion  of  men." 

^  Printed  and  sold  by  Edes  and  Gill  in  Queen  Street,  MDCCLXVI. 


Pastor  and  people  were  not  slow  in  learning  that 
it  was  policy  rather  than  justice  that  actuated  the 
British  ministry  in  repealing  the  Stamp  Act  ;  and 
early  in  the  year  1773  they  chose  a  committee  of 
nine  "to  consider  what  is  proper  for  this  district 
to  do,  at  this  alarming  time,  respecting  the  en- 
croachments that  have  been  made  upon  our  civil 
privilege."  The  result  of  the  town's  committee, 
communicated  to  the  town  of  Boston  throu2:h  its 
Committee  of  Correspondence,  was  most  encour- 
aging, coming  as  it  did  from  the  remote  border  of 
the  Province.  They  at  first  acknowledged  the  re- 
ceipt of  the  letter  and  pamphlet  sent  to  them  in 
common  with  other  towns,  by  the  authorities  at 
Boston,  in  which  particular  and  minute  accounts 
were  given  of  the  encroachments  made  upon  their 
charter  privileges.  The  Boston  patriots  were  fully 
assured  of  the  alarm  of  their  sympathizers  at  a 
distance.     They  say  :  — 

"  We  of  this  place  are  unanimous  ;  no  less  than  one  hun- 
dred have  signed  a  request  to  the  selectmen  to  call  a  meet- 
ing, though  we  count  but  one  hundred  and  sixty  families  ; 
and  when  met  the  fullest  meeting  that  was  ever  known  on 
any  occasion,  and  not  a  dissenting  vote  or  voice.  We  feel 
for  ourselves,  we  feel  for  our  posterity,  we  feel  for  our  breth- 
ren through  the  continent.  We  tremble  at  the  thought  of 
slavery,  either  civil  or  ecclesiastical,  and  are  fully  sensible 
of  the  near  connection  there  is  between  civil  and  religious 
lil)erty.  If  we  lose  the  former  the  latter  will  not  remain  ;  our 
resentment  (not  to  say  our  indignation)  rises  against  them, 
let  them  be  in  whatsoever  relation  they  may,  who  would  dare 
invade  our  natural  or  constitutional  rijihts."" 

APPEAL    OF    THE   BOSTON'  COMMITTEE        1 9 

The  voters  gave  their  representative  positive 
advice,  and  at  the  same  time  voted  to  add  two 
casks  of  powder  with  lead  "  answerable  to  their 
stock  of  ammunition." 

In  showing  the  successive  steps  in  the  town  of 
Pepperell  which  led  up  to  the  19th  of  April,  1775, 
there  is  left  no  room  for  doubt  that  the  acts  of  the 
Boston  leaders  were  as  leaven  to  all  the  communi- 
ties affected  by  the  king's  arbitrary  measures.  So 
thoroughly  aroused  were  the  people  at  this  north- 
ern border  of  the  Province  that  more  than  a  year 
before  the  Declaration  of  Independence  was  for- 
mulated, they  concluded  a  series  of  resolutions 
thus  :  — 

"  We  therefore  instruct  you,  sir,  that  you,  in  our  name 
and  behalf,  signify  to  the  Great  and  General  Court,  of  which 
you  are  a  member,  that  our  opinion  is,  that  independence  is 
the  only  alternative  for  the  safety  of  this  oppressed  land,  and 
that  if  the  honorable  Congress  should  think  it  best  for  the 
safety  of  the  United  Colonies  to  declare  them  independent 
of  Great  Britain,  we  acquiesce  heart  and  hand,  and  are  de- 
termined, at   the   risk   of  life   and   treasure,   to   support   the 


^U  cd' 

The  appeal  of  the  Boston  Committee  of  Corre- 
spondence met  with  a  prompt  response  from  the 
patriots  of  Pepperell.  Their  letter,  signed  by  Wil- 
liam Prescott,  was  the  third  in  order  of  date.      It 



accompanied  forty  bushels  of  grain  and  promises 
of  further  assistance  with  provisions  and  with  men, 
and  invoked  them  ''  to  stand  firm  in  the  common 

Something  was  yet  needed  to  prove  to  all  gen- 
erations that  these  people  were  not  as  "  sounding 
brass  or  a  tinkling  cymbal."  The  Lexington  alarm 
reached  these  remote  homes,  and  the  proof  was 
readily  furnished.  The  patriots  of  that  day  are 
largely  represented  by  name  and  blood  in  the  resi- 
dents of  to-day,  but  their  homes  have  almost  all 
disappeared,  or  been  greatly  changed;  yet  there  is 
one  to  which  I  most  gladly  invite  my  readers. 

Monument  on  Site  of  the  Meeting-House  in 
THE  Mother  Town 



We  have  no  title-deeds  to  house  or  lands ; 
Owners  and  occupants  of  earlier  dates, 
From  graves  forgotten  stretch  their  dusty  hands, 
And  hold  in  mortmain  still  their  old  estates. 







The  Prescott  family  home  is  on  the  northern 
border  of  the  town  of  Pepperell,  and  on  the  rising 
ground  that  soon  merges  into  the  hills  of  the 
Granite  State.  Its  present  territory  of  two  hun- 
dred acres  was  included  in  the  grant  of  1655  to 
Mr.  Dean  Winthrop  and  others.  Benjamin  Pres- 
cott was  the  first  of  the  family  to  secure  a  title  to 
this  remote  section.  He  was  doubtless  impelled 
by  that  spirit  of  adventure  which  actuated  many 
of  the  early  settlers  of  New  England  to  push  out 
where  land  was  abundant,  having  been  impressed 
that  such  property  was  the  basis  of  wealth  and 
influence  in  the  mother  country.      Benjamin  Pres- 


cott  began  early  to  exert  an  influence  in  the  West 
Parish  ;  and  his  son  William,  who  had  nearly  at- 
tained his  majority  when  the  Pepperell  home  was 
established,  found  there  ample  opportunity  for  the 
development  of  his  powers.  No  better  combina- 
tion of  blood,  brain,  and  muscle  could  be  found 
than  that  which  made  up  the  young  man  William 
Prescott,  who,  well  matched  with  Abigail  Hale,  his 
wife  of  Puritan  stock,  developed  this  home  on 
the  frontier,  and  continued  the  family  possession. 
This  young  farmer  was  a  power  in  the  .struggling 
town,  whose  records  show  that  he  was  amons:  the 
first  to  protest  against  injustice. 

We  can  imagine  the  influence  of  his  words  upon 
the  distressed  people  at  the  blockaded  port  of 
Boston,  voicing  as  they  did  the  sentiment  of  the 
northern  border  of  the  Province  at  the  time  when 
the  mandamus  councillors  took  their  oath  of  office. 

"  Be  not  dismayed  nor  disheartened  in  this  day  of  great 
trials.  We  lieartily  sympathize  with  you,  and  are  always 
ready  to  do  all  in  our  power  for  your  support,  comfort,  and 
relief;  knowing  that  Providence  has  placed  you  where  }ou 
must  stand  the  first  shock.  We  consider  that  we  are  all 
emerged  in  one  bottom,  and  must  sink  or  swim  together. 
We  think  if  we  submit  to  those  regulations,  all  is  gone.  Our 
forefathers  passed  the  vast  Atlantic,  spent  their  blood  and 
treasure,  that  they  might  enjoy  their  liberties,  both  civil  and 
religious,  and  transmit  them  to  their  posterity.  Their  chil- 
dren have  waded  through  seas  of  difficulty,  to  leave  us  free 
and  happy  in  the  enjoyment  of  English  privileges.  Now,  if 
we  should  give  them  up,  can  our  children  rise  up  and  call  us 


blessed?  Is  not  a  glorious  death  in  defence  of  our  liberties 
better  than  a  short,  infamous  life,  and  our  memory  to  be  had 
in  detestation  to  the  latest  posterity?  Let  us  all  be  of  one 
heart,  and  stand  fast  in  the  liberty  wherewith  Christ  has 
made  us  free ;  and  may  he  of  his  infinite  mercy  grant  us 
deliverance  out  of  all  our  troubles." 

In  driving  over  the  delightful  hills  of  the  town 
from  the  village  of  Pepperell  to  the  Prescott  home, 
one  can  but  see  in  fancy  the  dignified  figure  of 
the  patriot  preacher,  as  upon  his  horse  he  galloped 
over  this  route  to  the  same  homestead  to  take 
counsel  with  his  gallant  young  parishioner  and 
avowed  patriot.  Young  Prescott  was  appointed 
captain  of  the  militia  company  soon  after  his  re- 
turn from  the  expedition  to  Nova  Scotia,  and  was 
promoted  in  1774  to  the  position  of  colonel  of  the 
regiment  of  minute-men  from  Pepperell  and  ad- 
joining towns. 

Although  remote  from  any  centre  of  habita- 
tion, a  powerful  influence  was  exerted  from  this 
home  during  the  months  of  anxiety  which  pre- 
ceded open  hostilities.  Colonel  Prescott  was 
nearly  fifty  years  of  age,  and  besides  enjoying 
the  esteem  and  confidence  of  his  townsmen,  was 
well  and  favorably  known  in  all  that  locality  ; 
Province  line  was  no  barrier  to  his  popularity  in 
both  civic  and  military  circles.  The  semiweekly 
drillings  of  the  Pepperell  minute-men  under  Col- 
onel Prescott,  and  the  bold  statements  from  the 
pulpit    by    Rev.    Joseph    Emerson,    kept    the   peo- 


pie  in  constant  expectation  ;  so  that  when  the 
news  of  April  19  was  received  they  were  not 
long  in  making  final  preparations.  A  mounted 
messenger  reached  the  town  in  the  middle  of 
the  forenoon,  declaring  that  the  Regulars  had 
come  out  from  Boston,  and  killed  eight  men  at 
Lexington,  and  were  fighting  at  Concord.  The 
despatch  with  which  Colonel  Prescott  buckled 
on  his  sword,  and  bade  wife  and  only  son  Wil- 
liam, then  thirteen  years  of  age,  a  tender  fare- 
well as  he  galloped  off  the  hill,  may  be  known 
without  resorting  to  imagination  ;  for  his  habits 
of  early  years  and  later  experience  are  in  proof 
of  this.  His  order  was  for  the  Pepperell  com- 
pany and  that  at  HoUis  to  march  at  once  to 
Groton,  and  there  join  the  company  of  the  latter 
town,  while  he  proceeded  directly  to  Groton.  The 
effect  of  the  more  immediate  contact  with  Colonel 
Prescott  is  seen  in  the  report  that  the  company 
from  his  town  reached  Groton  before  the  men 
there  were  ready  to  march.  The  selectmen  were 
then  too-ether  distributing;  arms  and  ammunition 
to  their  soldiers.  Dr.  Oliver  Prescott,  chairman, 
brother  of  the  Colonel,  upon  hearing  the  music 
and  seeing  the  Pepperell  company  marching  to 
the  Common  in  full  ranks,  said,  ''This  is  a  dis- 
grace to  us  !  "  But  if  the  reader  has  studied  with 
care  the  first  volume  of  this  series,  ''Beneath  Old 
Roof  Trees,"  he  remembers  that  a  portion  of  the 
Groton    company   marched    during    the    hours   of 


the  previous  night,  and  consequently  represented 
the  town  in  the  fight  at  Old  North  Bridge. 

Since  it  is  the  Prescott  homestead  that  we  are 
now  considering,  we  will  leave  the  minute-men, 
and  return  to  the  historic  place.  Weary  with  the 
tumult  of  war,  Colonel  William  Prescott,  in  the 
spirit  of  a  Cincinnatus,^  returned  to  his  home, 
and  resumed  the  peaceful  employment  of  cultivat- 
ing his  paternal  acres.  War  did  not  deter  the  only 
son  of  the  colonel  from  his  school  course.  In 
the  autumn  of  1776  he  left  the  old  hearth-stone 
to  attend  school  at  Byfield,  where  he  fitted  for 
Harvard  College,  from  which  he  graduated,  and 
become  the  eminent  jurist.  Judge  William  Pres- 
cott. While  his  life  was  largely  spent  elsewhere, 
he  never  lost  his  interest  in  the  old  home.  Of 
the  next  generation  to  cherish  the  ancestral  home- 
stead came  William  H.  Prescott,  the  historian. 
Often  weary  of  city  life,  he  packed  his  books  in 
huge  trunks,  and  took  passage  in  the  old  stage- 
coach for  this  family  home  among  the  hills,  where 
he  found  tonic  in  the  pure  atmosphere,  and  inspi- 
ration from  the  invisible  presence  of  his  grand- 
sire,  the  hero  of  Bunker  Hill.  The  fifth  generation 
in   possession  of   the  well-known  estate  was  Mr. 

1  "The  officers  of  the  American  Army  having  been  taken  from 
the  Citizens  of  America  possess  high  veneration  for  the  character 
of  that  ilkistrious  Roman,  Lucius  Quintius  Cincinnatus,  and  being 
resolved  to  follow  his  example,  by  returning  to  their  citizenship, 
they  think  they  may  with  propriety  denominate  themselves  the 
Society  of  the  Cincinnati." 


William  G.  Prescott,  the  only  son  of  the  eminent 
scholar  and  historian.  It  was  his  greeting  that 
assured  me  of  a  cordial  welcome  to  the  home,  as 
he  grave  me  to  drink  from  the  well  where  the  sixth 
generation  quaffed  from  the  brimming  bucket, 
while  a  representative  of  the  seventh  generation 
prattled  in  innocency  at  our  feet.^ 

I  would  fain  share  with  my  reader  the  courtesy 
shown  me  by  Mr.  William  G.  Prescott  ;  but  since 
that  is  beyond  my  power,  I  now  invite  him  to  the 
enjoyment  of  a  June  day  at  the  old  homestead. 

One  of  the  many  precious  heirlooms  with  which 
this  house  abounds  is  the  commission  to  Colonel 
Prescott  in  the  army  of  "The  United  Colonies," 
signed  by  John  Hancock,  making  him  "  colonel  of 
the  7th  regiment  of  foot."  It  hangs  in  the  room 
made  sacred  by  the  life  of  the  one  to  whom  it  was 
given.  Another  reminder  of  the  colonel  is  a  frag- 
ment of  the  flowing  gown,  or  banyan,  which  made 
Colonel  Prescott  conspicuous  in  the  redoubt  at 
Bunker  Hill  on  the  17th  of  June.  He  threw  aside 
his  military  wrap  in  the  heat  of  the  engagement, 
and  appeared  in  this  peculiar  garment,  which, 
slashed  by  many'*a  sword  thrust,  was  long  treas- 
ured in  the  home  after  the  colonel  had  passed 
away.  The  majestic  figure  of  Colonel  Prescott  in 
this  peculiar  dress  attracted  the  eye  of  General 
Gage,  as  by  the  aid  of  his  glass  he  reviewed  the 

1  Child  of  Hon.  Roger  Wolcott,  now  Governor  of  Massachu- 
setts, and  Edith  Prescott,  daughter  of  WilHam  G.  Trescott. 


scenes  of  that  June  day.  Intent  on  duty,  Colonel 
Prescott  was  unmindful  of  danger,  scarcely  heed- 
ing the  shots  as  they  came  screaming  over  his 
head  from  the  sloops  of  war  which  lay  off  in  the 
stream.  The  eye  that  directed  the  shots  from  one 
vessel  of  the  fleet  was,  strangely  enough,  destined 
to  be  changed  from  that  of  an  enemy  of  the  Pro- 
vincials to  that  of  a  stanch  friend  ;  and  among 
the  attractions  of  the  home,  reminding  one  that 
truth  is  stranger  than  fiction,  are  two  cannon-balls, 
supposed  to  have  been  fired  from  the  sloop  Falcon 
to  the  redoubt  on  Bunker  Hill.  These  are  rusty 
with  the  age  of  one  hundred  and  twenty-one  years, 
but  are  kept  near  the  picture  of  the  man.  Captain 
Linzee,  who  it  is  supposed  directed  their  course. 

Captain  John  Linzee  of  the  royal  navy,  in  the 
service  of  the  king,  was  bent  on  the  destruction 
of  the  American  army  at  Bunker  Hill,  and  later 
harassing  the  people  of  the  shore  towns.  But  he 
afterwards  became  a  friend  of  the  Republic,  and 
in  the  days  of  peace  his  granddaughter  was  united 
in  marriage  with  a  grandson  of  Colonel  William 
Prescott  (William  H.,  the  historian).  The  ro- 
mance of  history  is  brought  out  most  vividly  by 
these  rusty  missiles  of  war,  and  by  the  strong  fea- 
tures of  the  man  who  steered  their  course.  What 
wonder  Thackeray  should  make  note  of  this  in  the 
opening  of  the  ''Virginians." 

"  On  the  library  wall  of  one  of  the  most  famous  writers  of 
America  there  hang  two  crossed  swords  which  his  relatives 


wore  in  the  great  war  for  independence.  The  one  sword  was 
gallantly  drawn  in  the  service  of  the  king,  the  other  was  the 
weapon  of  a  brave  and  honored  republican  soldier.  The 
possessor  of  the  harmless  trophy  has  earned  for  himself  a 
name  alike  honored  in  his  ancestors"'  country  and  in  his  own, 
where  genius  like  his  has  always  a  peaceful  welcome." 




WORN    BY    HIM 



AT    THE 

Battle  of  Bunker  Hill 

17  June,   1775, 


bequeathed  to  the 


BY    HIS    grandson 










14  April,   1859, 

by  his  grandchildren, 




These  crossed  swords  are  treasured  in  the  rooms 
of  the  Massachusetts  Historical  Society  at  Bos- 
ton, and  remind  one  of  the  fulfilment  of  the  proph- 
ecy, ''And  he  shall  judge  among  the  nations,  and 
shall  rebuke  many  people :  and  they  shall  beat 
their  swords  into  ploughshares,  and  their  spears 
into  pruninghooks  :  nation  shall  not  lift  up  sword 
against  nation,  neither  shall  they  learn  war  any 
more  "  (Isaiah  ii.  4). 


Another  treasured  relic  of  war  is  the  hilt  of  the 
sword  used  by  the  first  Napoleon.  The  buffet 
near  by  in  the  corner  is  loaded  with  the  china  of 
the  united  English  and  American  families.  The 
most  precious  are  pieces  used  by  Colonel  William 
Prescott  in  his  ancient  home.  A  large  share  of 
richly  carved  furniture  is  in  use  to-day,  as  it  was 
when  brought  across  the  water  for  Judge  William 
Prescott,  when  setting  up  housekeeping  with  his 
beautiful  bride,  Catherine  G.  Hickling.  On  the 
right  of  the  front  hall  of  the  original  house  is  the 
spacious  library  of  to-day,  full  of  the  reminders  of 
the  historian,  whose  sweet  and  thoughtful  features 
are  represented  in  a  lifelike  bust  in  marble.  Hun- 
dreds of  volumes  suggest  his  struggle  over  his  in- 
valuable histories.  After  winding  up  the  staircase 
with  its  ancient  wainscoting  of  oak,  one  enters  the 
room  where  the  historian  did  much  of  his  inde- 
fatigable labor.  The  peculiar  arrangement  for  light 
reminds  the  visitor  of  the  story  of  the  crust  of 
bread  thrown  by  a  careless  student,  which  caused 
the  historian  to  lose  the  sight  of  one  eye  for- 

In  all  the  vivid  reminders  of  the  successive  gen- 
erations of  the  family,  there  is  nothing  to  be  seen 
that  more  forcibly  recalls  the  hero  of  Bunker 
Hill  than  the  brass  door-knocker,  so  often  manipu- 
lated by  the  old  soldiers  when  calling  upon  the 
colonel,  their  leader,  and  the  rude  chair,  with  its 
wooden  seat  and  arms,  in  which  Colonel  Prescott 


was  in  the  habit  of  sitting  when  he  entertained 
his  friends  by  the  crackling  fire. 

So  free-handed  was  the  colonel  that  he  never 
refused  anything  asked  by  a  soldier  who  fought 
under  his  command.  Hence  the  colonel  left  his 
estate  in  debt,  which  his  son,  the  judge,  cleared, 
and  transmitted,  in  all  its  rural  beauty,  to  later 

"  Pleas'd  with  his  guests,  the  good  man  learn'd  to  glow, 
And  quite  forgot  their  vices  in  their  woe; 
Careless  their  merits  or  their  faults  to  scan, 
His  pity  gave  ere  charity  began. 

Thus  to  relieve  the  wretched  was  his  pride, 
And  even  his  failings  lean'd  to  virtue's  side." 


Tablet  Seen  in  the  Muihek  Town 



Say  then,  O  poet !    when  sages 

Shall  anew  the  tale  relate, 

Not  for  a  thousand  ages 

Was  a  little  battle  so  great ; 

Yea,  write,  besides,  on  your  pages, 

With  an  adamantine  pen. 

Not  for  a  million  ages 

May  such  battle  be  fought  again. 

Thomas  W.  Parsons, 
Dedication  of  Tablets  at  Charlestoivn. 








I  KNOW  of  no  Other  town  in  New  England  hav- 
ing so  large  part  in  the  opening  Revolution  whose 
story  comes  to  us  to-day  in  as  direct  manner  as 
does  that  of  Pepperell.  Of  the  more  than  four- 
score soldiers  of  the  town  who  left  their  homes 
on  April  19  and  fought  at  Bunker  Hill,  a  full 
score   were   living  when   Rev.   Charles   Babbidge, 


who  is  now  pastor  emeritus  of  the  first  parish 
church,  began  his  work  in  that  town.  It  was  my 
good  fortune  to  receive  from  this  venerable  cler- 
gyman the  reports  of  the  personal  experience  of 
the  Pepperell  soldiers  as  he  gathered  them  from 

Rev.  Charles  Babbidge 

the  lips  of  the  veterans  when,  in  his  early  minis- 
try, he  talked  with  them  by  the  wayside,  or  gave 
them  the  consolations  of  the  gospel  in  their 
homes.  Rev.  Charles  Babbidsfe,  now  a  nonasre- 
narian,  began  his  ministry  in  Pepperell  in  1 833. 
He  is  one  who  has  never  statedly  ministered  to 

KEV.   MR.   BABBIDGE  33 

any  other  people  than  those  of  his  first  clioice. 
For  more  than  sixty-three  years  he  has  been  rec- 
ognized as  the  pastor  of  the  first  parish,  although 
of  late  not  in  active  service. 

In  addition  to  all  the  ecclesiastical  functions  of 
a  faithful  pastor,  Rev.  Mr.  Babbidge  has  never 
allowed  the  fire  of  patriotism  to  go  out  on  the 
altar  so  early  kindled  in  that  town  by  his  prede- 
cessor. Rev.  Joseph  Emerson,  and  kept  burning- 
through  all  the  years  of  the  town's  history.  How 
far  this  may  be  attributable  to  the  location,  and 
to  the  score  of  heroes  of  Bunker  Hill  to  whom  he 
ministered  until  they  joined  their  comrades,  we 
may  not  be  able  to  determine.  When  from  the 
standpoint  of  a  nonagenarian  this  pastor  reviewed 
his  early  years  at  Pepperell,  he  expressed  himself 
in  the  semi-scriptural  language,  "  Did  not  my 
heart  burn  within  me  as  I  walked  and  talked  with 
them  by  the  way,  and  as  they  opened  to  me  the 
secrets  of  their  lives  t "  But  his  patriotism  was  not 
sentiment  alone  ;  for  at  the  commencement  of  the 
Civil  War  he  was  chaplain  of  the  Sixth  Regiment, 
and  the  first  minister  in  the  country  to  enlist. 
He  thus  followed  in  the  footsteps  of  the  town's 
first  minister,  who  is  said  to  have  offered  up  the 
first  prayer  in  camp  at  Cambridge.  Having  served 
through  the  three  months'  campaign  of  "the  Old 
Sixth,"  Rev.  Mr.  Babbidge  was  commissioned 
chaplain  of  the  Twenty-sixth  Massachusetts  Regi- 
ment,  in    which    he  served  three  years,  when  he 


returned  to  his  people.^  With  this  introduction  to 
a  modern  patriot  of  Pepperell,  my  reader  must  be 
prepared  to  catch  an  impulse  for  good  citizenship 
from  the  story  as  he  received  it  from  survivors  of 
the  Revolution  :  — 

"  Having  been  in  camp  since  we  arrived  there  on  the  19th 
of  April,  we  had  become  restless  and  anxious  for  some  more 
active  service,  and  our  order  to  march  over  to  Charlestown 
on  the  night  of  June  16  was  gladly  received.  We  were  al- 
ways ready  to  follow  our  neighbor,  Colonel  Prescott.  It  was 
our  regiment,  with  detachments  from  others,  that  marched 
from  Cambridge  Common  to  Charlestown,  and  took  posses- 
sion of  the  heights.  Our  colonel  was  at  the  head.  He  was 
dressed  in  a  simple,  loose  blue  coat  and  three-cornered  hat. 
Two  sergeants  carried  dark  lanterns  ahead  of  him  ;  the  in- 
trenching-tools  were  in  carts  in  the  rear.  We  had  our  arms  ; 
and  most  of  us  had  one  day's  rations  in  our  knapsacks,  al- 
though some  did  not  obey  the  order  and  were  not  so  well 
provided,  not  realizing  what  was  in  store  for  them.  There 
were  one  or  two  halts  for  consultation  of  the  officers  ;  but  we 
reached  the  hill  about  midnight,  and  began  work  in  earnest. 
It  went  very  well  until  the  June  sun  of  the  17th  licked  up  the 
dew,  and  we  began  to  be  weary.  We  had  no  sleep,  and  but 
little  refreshment ;  yet  we  could  not  give  up  so  long  as  our 
colonel  was  with  us,  and  cheering  us  on  as  he  walked  lei- 
surely around  on  the  top  of  the  redoubt,  giving  directions, 
and  uttering  words  of  approval,  and  cracking  an  occasional 

1  "There  is  one  consideration  that  may  afford  you  consolation: 
you  will  never  again  receive  a  letter  from  one,  who,  like  myself, 
played  in  his  childhood  in  and  out  of  the  redoubt  on  Bunker  Hill 
while  it  still  remained  precisely  as  it  was  when  Prescott  left  it,  and 
when  Warren  moistened  it  with  his  l)lood."  —  Letter  from  Dr. 
Babbidge  written  for,  and  read  on,  the  centennial  of  Colonel  Wil- 
liam Prescott's  death. 


joke.  He  knew  that  he  was  detected  by  the  British,  but 
seemed  perfectly  unconcerned.  When  it  was  nearly  noon 
on  the  17th  we  were  pretty  tired  and  sleepy,  and  our  officers 
urged  the  colonel  to  send  over  to  General  Ward  at  Cam- 
bridge for  fresh  troops  ;  but  the  colonel  would  not  hear  to  it, 
and  said  '  The  men  who  have  raised  these  works  will  best  de- 
fend them  ;  they  have  had  the  merit  of  the  labor,  and  should 
have  the  honor  of  victory  if  attacked.' 

"General  Warren  came  up  with  his  musket  in  hand  a 
short  time  before  the  fight  began.  Our  colonel  had  heard 
that  he  had  been  commissioned  major-general  the  day  before, 
and  hence  offered  him  the  command,  to  which  he  replied, 
'No;  I  have  not  received  my  commission.  I  have  come  as 
a  volunteer,  and  am  happy  to  learn  service  from  a  soldier  of 
your  experience.' 

"We  watched  the  landing  of  the  enemy,  and  also  the 
cannon-balls  as  they  came  over  our  heads.  We  could  see 
the  roofs  of  the  houses  over  in  Boston  covered  with  people, 
watching  to  see  what  would  be  the  result  of  the  king's  army 
as  they  landed  and  marched  up  the  hill.  Up  the  hill  they 
came,  firing  as  they  advanced.  But  we  kept  silent  behind 
our  embankment,  for  we  knew  we  had  no  ammunition  to 
waste.  '  Aim  low,  boys,'  whispered  Colonel  Prescott ;  '  fire 
at  their  waistbands,  and  wait  till  you  see  the  whites  of  their 
eyes.  Waste  no  powder.'  When  the  redcoats  were  almost 
up  the  hill,  their  plumes  nearly  level  with  its  crest,  bang ! 
bang  !  went  our  fifteen  hundred  muskets  at  once,  and  down 
went  scores  of  the  brave  Britishers,  cut  down  as  the  scythe 
cuts  the  waving  grass. 

"  We  did  the  best  we  could  ;  but  when  our  ammunition  was 
gone,  there  was  no  other  way  for  us  but  to  retreat  while  the 
smoke  from  the  burning  town  enveloped  us.  The  hardest 
part  of  it  all  was  to  leave  so  many  of  our  neighbors  dead  and 
wounded  in  the  redoubt.  But  after  all  that  we  had  suffered 
since  leaving  Cambridge,  we  would  gladly  have  gone  back 
Uiat    night  with   more  men   and   supplies,   and   retaken  the 


heights,    or   perished    there    with   our  townsmen  w'ho   were 
dead,  and  others  who,  missing,  we  supposed  were  dead. 

"The  grief  in  these  Pepperell  homes  when  the  news  of 
the  battle  reached  here,  we  may  well  imagine.  Our  people 
were  not  altogether  unprepared  for  the  sad  tidings  ;  they  had 
distinctly  heard  the  roar  of  the  cannon.  Our  faithful  pastor 
made  his  record ;  and  there  on  the  church  book  the  boys' 
names  appear  in  his  handwriting,  the  same  as  though  they 
had  died  here  peacefully  at  home." 

The  anxiety  of  Rev.  Mr.  Emerson  for  his  people 
in  camp  was  so  great  that  he  repeatedly  made 
journeys  to  Cambridge  that  he  might  minister  to 
the  survivors.  On  one  occasion  while  there  he 
took  a  severe  cold,  which  terminated  his  useful 
life.  Another  hand  completed  the  record  ;  but  it 
is  apparent  that  pastor  and  eight  of  his  people 
laid  down  their  lives  early  in  the  war  for  freedom. 
The  names  of  the  Pepperell  men  who  fell  on  the 
i/th  of  June,  as  they  appear  on  the  bronze  tablets 
at  Charlestown,  are  as  follows  :  — 

prescott's  regiment. 

Niittiiig's  company.  —  Nathaniel  Parker, ^  William  Warren, 
Edmund  Peers,-  Wainwright  Fisk,  Ebenezer  Laughton,  Jere- 
miah Shattuck. 

Asa  Lawrence  compaiiy.  —  Lieut.  Joseph  Spaulding,  (un- 
assigned)  Amasa  Fisk.^ 

1  Nathaniel  Parker  was  junior.  His  father,  Nathaniel  senior, 
aged  sixty-eiglit  years,  died  on  the  same  day  of  fever  at  his  home 
in  Pepperell. 

^  Edmund  Peers  should  be  Pierce. 

^  Amasa  Fisk  must  have  died  later  from  wounds  or  disease  in  a 


ij^r        ^nfeLUjA&r  cf  So/in   Oftc^n.     j/e^  6orn.. 

y3     jAyift.^/'S/otgret^iJ^Jt.-f^.  Ir,  cJ>iA>  & 


7     • 

9un.t.  :ft  Uiaycn  _    ^ 

1%  J^atf' /o^y/c.  JU,!:y£         .A:y^cf  ^a^.40^^  H 

jy  /5e/r/r//^7    ,y£^    ^c    A^i^ 

J.4u^.  iy.,AQ>uu^Acr  cr/^ Tki?.,^c^7encc  a^D  ucat-  ^^-  ^*  ^/.  ^^uAn/<uj2i 
^//F/'  r/\  Vit'ArA^,<o/f  .J^^^/^^k'    /?^>^*/Cryy/      aI< 





Note.  —  The  church  record  of  deaths  of  Pcpperell  men  at 
Bunker  Hill  seems  to  be  unquestionable  as  authority,  although 
tardy  in  its  appearance.  It  must  have  been  made  soon  after  the 
17th  of  June,  as  it  is  in  the  handwriting  of  Rev.  Joseph  Emerson, 
whose  own  death  occurred  in  about  four  months  after  the  loss  of 
his  parishioners.  Its  acceptance  is  an  admission  of  inaccuracy  on 
the  memorial  tablets  at  Charlestown.  Benjamin  Wood,  credited 
to  Groton,  belonged  to   Pepperell. 

The  name  of  the  patriot  preacher  of  Pepperell, 
who  died  from  disease  contracted  in  the  service, 
is  seen  on  the  rude  slab  erected  by  the  town,  on 
which  is  read  :  — 

Weep  not  for  inc.  but  rvecp  for  yourselves  and  for  your  e/iililrcn 
Erected  by  the  Town  of  Pepperell 
■   to  the  memory  of 
First  Pastor  of  the  Church   here, 
wlio  deceased  Oct.  29th  1775  in  the  ^26.  year  of  his  age, 
and  the  29th  of  his  ministry. 
Steadfast  in  the  Faith  once  delivered  to  tlie  Saints.     Fixed  and  labori- 
ous in  the  cause  of  Christ  &  precious  souls.     Exemplary  in  visiting  & 
sympathizing  with  his  flock  —  Diligent  in  improving  his  Talents  —  A 
kind  Husband  and  a  tender  Parent  —  a  faithful  Reprover  —  a  constant 
Friend —  &  a  true  Patriot. 

Having  ceased  from  his  labors  his  xvorks  follow  Jiiin. 

Colonel  Prescott  remained  in  service  until  the 
end  of  the  year  1776;  and  in  the  autumn  of  the 
following  year  he  went  as  a  volunteer  with  some 
of  his  former  officers  and  townsmen  to  aid  in  the 
capture  of  General  Burgoyne,  which  was  his  last 

prison,   and,   if  belonging   to   Pepperell,  was   not   recorded   by  his 
pastor,  who  may  have  died  before  him. 



military  service.  After  the  enjoyment  of  peace 
and  his  country's  independence  at  the  old  home- 
stead, he  died  in  1795,  at  the  age  of  sixty-nine 
years.  In  the  old  burying-ground  at  Pepperell, 
where  rests  the  patriot  preacher,  and  within  the 
shadow  of  the  old  church,  stands  a  plain  tomb, 
built  of  four  upright  granite  slabs,  forming  a 
square  enclosure  about  three  feet  high,  upon  the 

Grave  of  Rev.  Joseph  Emerson,  Pepperell 

top  of  which  rest  two  horizontal  tablets  of  slate- 
stone,  bearing  the  following  inscription^:  — 




Who  died  on  tlie  13th  day  of  October.  Anno  Domini  1795, 
in  the  seventieth  year  of  his  age. 






Who  died  Oct.  19,  a.d.  1821,  Al.  89. 

The  grave  of  Colonel  Prescott  is  surrounded 
by  those  of  his  neighbors  and  friends.  The  flags 
floating  from  the  bronze  markers  of  the  S.  A.  R. 
remind  the  visitor  that,  as  in  life,  so  in  death  the 
gallant  colonel  is  in  the  midst  of  his  soldiers. 


DIED    OCT.    23,    1S05,    ^.    79. 

In  common  with  his  neighbors,  love  of  country  was  his  ruling  passion. 
He  was  ever  ready  to  offer  up  his  own  life,  and  the  lives  of  his  sons, 
a  sacrifice  on  the  altar  of  liberty  during  the  darkest  period  of  the 



Who  died  March  5th,  1S04, 

Aged  70  years. 

He  served  his  country  in  her  contest  for  the  obtainment  of  freedom  and 
independence,  and  has  since  sustained  with  honor  several  important 
offices,  both  civil  and  military.  He  was  no  less  endeared  to  his  family 
and  connections  by  his  disposition  to  disseminate  knowledge,  pro- 
mote the  social  virtues,  than  to  the  community  by  his  public  spirit 
and  charity. 



Who  departed  this  life  in  the  Continental  army  at  Valley  Forge, 
In  the  year  177S,  in  ye  17th  year  of  his  age. 
He  was  the  son  of  Mr.  Phineas  Chamberlin,  and  Mrs.  Lydia,  his  wife. 



DROWNED    MAY    25,    1816,    AGED    85, 

(He  passed  through  the  Battle  of  Bunker  Hill  in  command  of  a  company.) 



SONS    OF    MR,    NEFB.    HOBART    AND    MRS.    RACHEL,    HIS   WIFE. 

Daniel  fell  in  the  Battle  of  White  Plains  Oct.  28,  1776,  aged  28  yrs. 

Joel  was  drowned  at  ye  Eastward  Oct.  9,  17S5,  aged  20  yrs. 

Erected  by  the  brethren. 

Died  1 8 19,  aged  69. 

Died  1833,  ae.  ^t. 

Died  Sept.  1847,  je.  87. 

Died  July  27,  1822,  ae.  65. 



Who  was  slain  in  the  memorable  Battle  on  Bunker  Hill, 

On  the  17th  of  June,  1775,  in  ye  37th  year  of  his  age. 

On  the  same  stone  is  read  :  — 

HERE    LIES    THE    BODY    OF 



Who  departed  this  life  January  4th,  1775,  in  ye  3Sth  year  of  her  age. 

Note.  — On  the  top,  in  the  face  of  this  moss-covered  stone,  is 
rudely  carved  the  representation  of  a  sword.  To  the  present  gen- 
eration this  has  lost  its  significance,  but  meant  much  to  the  family 
who  erected  this  memorial,  as  is  seen  in  the  following  family  nar- 


"  Fight  on,  brave  boys,  they  fall  like  pigeons  !  " 
were  the  last  words  of  Joseph  Spanieling,  First 
Lientenant  of  Captain  Asa  Lawrence's  company  in 
the  Battle  of  Bnnker  Hill.  When  this  brave  son 
of  Pepperell  yielded  up  his  life,  the  Provincials  ex- 
pected to  win  the  day.  They  had  full  confidence 
in  their  leader,  Colonel  William  Prescott,  and  be- 
lieved that  with  him  they  were  sure  to  come  off 
victorious  ;  in  fact,  they  were  ready  to  die  for  him 
if  need  be.  Tradition  says  that  Lieutenant  Spaul- 
ding,  early  in  the  battle  of  the  17th  of  June,  volun- 
tarily took  a  position  of  danger  in  place  of  Colonel 
Prescott.  \x\  order  to  fully  estimate  the  patriotism 
of  the  yeomen  soldiers  of  the  opening  Revolution, 
one  needs  to  know  something  of  the  sacrifice  made 
in  order  to  leave  their  homes  to  enter  the  service 
of  their  country.  With  the  opening  of  the  year 
1775,  Lieutenant  Joseph  Spaulding  had  seen  the 
grave  close  over  the  lifeless  form  of  his  beloved 
wife,  leaving  him  with  the  care  of  a  young  son 
and  dauo'hter.  It  was  when  his  hands  and  heart 
were  full  that  the  Lexington  alarm  was  sounded 
through  the  town,  and  Lieutenant  Spaulding  was 
quick  to  respond.  If  he  had  retired  from  service 
after  the  experiences  of  April  19,  no  one  would 
have  thought  of  censuring  him  ;  but  the  brave 
young  man  only  returned  to  make  provision  for 
his  children,  and  then  rejoined  his  comrades  in 
camp  at  Cambridge,  where  he  was  found  when 
orders  came  to  march  over  to  Charlestown  with 


intrenching-tools,  etc.,  on  the  night  of  the  i6th 
of  June.  Through  the  busy  hours  of  that  night, 
and  on  the  following  morning,  his  thoughts  must 
have  been  divided  between  the  motherless  children 
at  home  in  Pepperell,  and  the  movements  of  the 
British  army  in  and  around  Boston.  But  regard- 
less of  the  natural  yearnings  for  the  welfare  of  his 
children.  Lieutenant  Joseph  Spaulding  manfully 
faced  the  enemy  ;  and  when  he  fell,  it  was  with  a 
word  of  encouragement  upon  his  lips.  ''  They  fall 
like  pigeons  !  "  No  words  could  have  been  more 
natural,  or  suggestive  of  the  spring  and  fall  game  of 
those  towns,  and  of  the  manner  of  capturing  the 
great  flocks  of  wild  pigeons  that  made  their  semi- 
annual visits  to  the  towns  in  Middlesex  County. 
These  were  the  last  words  uttered  by  Lieutenant 
Spaulding.  They  were  meaningless  when  first  re- 
ported to  the  orphans  at  Pepperell  ;  but  as  they 
advanced  in  years  their  full  significance  became 
apparent,  and  they  have  been  transmitted  from 
generation  to  generation  with  that  spirit  of  pa- 
triotism which  prompted  their  utterance  in  the 
hour  of  death  in  the  redoubt  on  Bunker  Hill.  In 
addition  to  the  message,  there  was  brought  to  the 
home  the  sword  taken  from  the  dead  soldier. 
This  has  been  equally  precious,  and  is  now  treas- 
ured as  the  Sword  of  Bunker  Hill  by  a  great-grand- 
son, Edgar  Oliver  Spaulding,  at  Plymouth,  N.H. 

Says  the  owner :  *'  I  am  a  son  of  Oliver  Spaul- 
ding and  Sarah  Ann  Hawkins  of  Rumney,  N.H. 


My  father  was  a  son  of  Oliver  Spaulding  and 
Sarah  Greenouoh  and  grandson  of  Lieutenant 
Joseph   Spaulding." 

Says  the  proud  owner  of  the  sword,  "  My  grand- 
father left  Pepperell  about  the  year  1787.     Being 


M  A  S  S  A  C  H  U  S  E  T.T  S-B  A  ^\ 

'  E,  r(*j»rj  15  •.!";  -Jii'  Triifl    tid  Coi.uacnct.  in  vour  O  uragc  aud  fjfiod  CoiniuCi, 

lattJ,"fcr  !jc  O-kr.ce  of  Cod  Cui<-.jjy. 

kll  to  t^hervc  an^ 
,  rouvu'l  froi-a  the 

ommaadtt!  rn  <-^kv'  vim  .  ^  c) 
•twral  and  C<iintcindfr  jr  Cljjcf  of  iLt;  F91 

-rtiTrr.,    t, 

■  titi  i  ur; 

^n,  orhef; 

P.  T, 



Lieutenant  Joseph  Spaulding's  Commission 

an  orphan  and  so  early  removed  from  the  town 
where  his  parents  were  best  known,  he  did  not 
have  the  record  of  family  joys  and  sorrows,  and 
could  tell  but  little  save  the  simple  story,  '  My 
mother  died  a  few  months  before  my  father  was 
killed  at  Bunker  Hill,  after  which  my  sister  and 
myself  lived  for  a  time  at  grandsir's.'  "    This  story 



by  the  great-grandson  of  the  hero  of  Bunker  Hill 
is  strengthened  by  the  silent  testimony  of  the 
stone  at  the  grave  of  the  wife  of  Lieutenant  Jo- 
seph Spaulding.  This  rude  memorial  was  erected 
by  a  provision  made  for  that  purpose  in  the  last 
will  of  William   Spaulding  of  Pepperell,  father  of 

the  hero.  The  will,  ad- 
mitted to  probate  Sept. 
29,  1770,  directs  that 
2:ravestones  shall  be 
put  up  to  the  mem- 
ory of  his  deceased 
wife,  and  to  that  of  his 
son  Joseph  and  wife. 
In  addition  to  this, 
there  appears  in  the 
old  church  record  of 
deaths,  in  the  hand- 
writing of  the  patriot 
preacher.  Rev.  Joseph 
Emerson,  that  which 
time  has  not  effaced. 
The  first  entry  of  the  year  1775  is  the  death  of 
the  wife  of  Joseph  Spaulding,  /E38,  —  nervous 
fever.  The  eleventh  entry  is  Joseph  Spaulding, 
^Z7^  —  killed  in  ye  battle  at  Charlestown.  Being 
the  oldest  of  the  eight  Pepperell  men  who  per- 
ished at  Bunker  Hill,  Lieutenant  Spaulding's 
name  is  placed  at  the  head  of  the  list  of  patriot 

Bunki;r  Hill 


The  Spanieling  sword,  like  many  of  the  weapons 
carried  by  the  minute-men  on  the  19th  of  April 
and  17th  of  June,  dated  back  to  the  Colonial 
wars.  It  was  owned  by  Major  Rogers,  a  British 
officer  in  the  French  war.  The  owner  acciden- 
tally dropped  it  into  a  lake,  from  whence  it  was 
recovered  by  Lieutenant  Spaulding,  who  volun- 
tarily dived  for  it,  and  was  successful  in  bringing 
it  from  the  sandy  bottom.  But  upon  offering  it  to 
its  owner,  he  was  rewarded  for  his  daring  feat  by 
the  gift  of  the  weapon.  The  young  man  carried 
it  home  to  Pepperell  as  a  trophy  of  the  French 
war,  naturally  took  it  with  him  when  next  called 
to  service,  and  used  it  as  faithfully  against  the  king 
as  it  had  ever  been  used  in  the  service  of  his 
Majesty  in  the  hand  of  Major  Rogers. 

"The  God  of  Freedom  hlessed  the  Sword  of  Bunker  Hill." 




They  helped  to  Hght  the  torch  of  Uberty's  fires.  A  man  who  makes 
a  sacrifice  for  his  fatherland,  be  he  never  so  lowly,  his  name  should  be 
forever  written  in  the  history  of  the  nation.  —  Hon.  John  R.  Murphy, 
JiDie  17,  1889. 


SOLDIERS        OF        THE         REVOLUTION.  THOMAS 

PAINe's     "common     sense." NO     GOVERNMENT 

HOMES     FOR     VETERANS     OF      THE     WAR.  —  MILI- 



Besides  the  general  narrative,  the  young  pas- 
tor gathered  much  in  the  way  of  incidents  from 
the  older  members  of  his  parish,  who,  as  they 
neared  the  threshold  of  eternity,  seemed  to  live 
over  again  the  experiences  of  their  early  years, 
particularly  those  of  the  war.  ^ays  Mr.  Babbidge, 
"I  sat  by  the  bedside  of  an  old  soldier,  one  of 
my  parishioners,  about  to  depart  this  life.  His 
thoughts,  dwelling  upon  the  future,  led  him  to  de- 
sire to  discuss  the  works  of  Thomas  Paine.  There 
had  been  placed  in  his  hand,  while  in  camp,  a 
pamphlet  entitled  "Common-Sense,"  written  in  a 


popular  style  by  Paine.  In  this  he  advocated  the 
cause  of  the  American  Colonies  against  the  mother 
country.  The  success  and  influence  of  the  publi- 
cation were  extraordinary  ;  and  it  won  the  author 
the  friendship  of  Washington,  Franklin,  and  other 
distinguished  leaders,  as  well  as  the  confidence  of 
the  soldiers  fighting  for  their  independence.  This 
Pepperell  soldier  had  treasured  the  pamphlet,  and 
naturally  been  led  to  study  other  works  by  the 
same  author,  and  been  greatly  impressed  by  his 
infidel  opinions,  which  seemed  to  be  clouding  the 
light  of  revelation  as  he  was  nearing  his  end.  I 
was  impressed  by  this  experience  with  the  fact 
that  these  old  veterans  had  not  only  scars  of 
body,  but  of  mind,  as  the  result  of  their  early 
service  in  the  war." 

Our  country  was  in  no  condition  to  make  the 
liberal  provisions  for  the  soldiers  after  the  Revo- 
lution that  it  did  after  the  Civil  War,  and  not  a 
few  of  them  ended  their  lives  in  the  almshouse. 
"This  was  the  case  in  Pepperell,"  said  the  clergy- 
man; ''and  I  frequently  visited  old  soldiers  at  that 
institution  when  in  the  discharge  of  my  parochial 
duties,  and  there  caught  anew  from  the  veterans 
the  impulse  of  patriotism.  They  were  old  and 
worn-out  men  ;  and  no  one  could  look  upon  them, 
and  think  what  they  had  sacrificed  and  endured, 
and  not  be  drawn  to  them  very  strongly.  There 
was  Moses  Blood,  'an  Israelite  without  guile,'  and 
Jedediah  Jewett,  '  Uncle  Jeddie,'  as  he  was  famil- 


iarly  known,  and  Mr.  Wright,  all  tenderly  cared 
for  in  that  most  excellent  home.  Each  had  his 
peculiarities,  and  was  allowed  to  indulge  them. 
Their  sayings  are  frequently  quoted  in  the  town 
to  this  day.  The  wit  of  one  of  them,  Thomas 
Seward,  seemed  to  sharpen  with  advancing  age. 
Rev.  Mr.  Bullard,  my  predecessor,  called  at  the 
almshouse,  and  there  met  the  veteran.  Desiring 
to  know  how  many  inmates  there  were,  he  said  to 
Mr.  Seward,  '  How  many  here  are  supported  by 
the  town  t '  The  reply  was,  '  Two,  sir  ;  myself 
and  you,  and  being  the  older  I  put  myself  first.' 
This,  to  the  minister,  whose  support  was  provided 
in  town-meeting,  in  much  the  same  manner  as 
was  that  of  the  poor,  was  so  well  put  that  the 
pastor  did  not  fail  to  report  it." 

While  the  town  of  Pepperell  has  never  been  neg- 
lectful of  the  anniversary  of  April  19,  and  with 
the  other  towns  in  that  locality  duly  appreciates 
it,  their  especial  day  of  annual  observance  has 
been  that  of  the  17th  of  June.  As  long  as  any 
of  the  old  heroes  lived,  they  were  the  central 
figure  in  the  local  celebration.  A  military  spirit 
always  prevailed  in  the  town  ;  guns  were  fired  in 
all  parts  on  the  17th,  a  dinner  was  served,  the 
Prescott  Guards  were  on  duty,  and  an  oration  was 
always  delivered. 

"The  military  discipline  throughout  the  State," 
said  Mr.  Babbidge,  "  if  properly  conducted,  tends 
to  cultivate  obedience  and  good  manners,  and  thus 


is  conducive  to  proper  life.  Tliis  was  true  in  a 
large  degree  tliroughout  the  Commonwealth  as 
long  as  the  organization  was  kept  up.  When  I 
was  in  Harvard  College  we  had  one  of  the  finest 
companies  in  the  State,  consisting  of  the  students. 
The  State  provided  our  arms,  and  we  drilled  for 
exhibition  four  times  each  year.  ,  Robert  C.  Win- 
throp  was  our  captain.  While  sitting  here  by  my 
hearth-stone  and  looking  backward,  I  can  but  at- 
tribute much  of  the  success  of  the  Northern  army 
in  the  Civil  War  to  the  familiarity  with  arms  which 
dates  back  to  those  days." 

Among  the  Pepperell  men  who  served  at  Bunker 
Hill  was  Sergeant  Edmund  Bancroft,  who  is  rep- 
resented there  to-day  in  blood  and  name  by  his 
grandson,  Edmund  Bancroft.  There  is  no  more 
convincing  evidence  of  the  character  and  ability 
of  the  yeoman  soldiery  of  1775  than  is  found  in 
this  town,  where  one  of  their  men,  a  sergeant, 
who  fousiht  at  Bunker  Hill,  served  the  town  later 
in  the  second  and  third  Provincial  Congresses. 
The  home  of  the  soldier  and  representative  to 
Provincial  Congress  has  disappeared  ;  but  on  the 
same  acres  is  the  home  of  his  grandson,  Edmund 
of  to-day.  This  man  repeats  the  familiar  narra- 
tive as  he  received  it,  a  fireside  tale,  confirming 
that  of  many  others  ;  but  he  naturally  introduces 
that  later  experience  of  the  war  in  which  the 
town  had  a  most  interesting  share,  the  surrender 
of  Burgoyne.     Colonel  Prescott,  with  other  men  of 


the  town,  were  in  that  service  when  the  Northern 
army  surrendered.^ 

After  the  surrendered  army  arrived  at  Cam- 
bridge, several  of  Burgoyne's  officers  were  sent 
out  to  Pepperell  on  parole.  Two  of  them  were 
boarded  in  the  Bancroft  family,  and  others  were 
quartered  in  the,  neighborhood.  This  provision 
was  doubtless  made  through  the  influence  of  Mr. 
Bancroft.  Says  the  present  Edmund,  "My  father, 
who  was  Edmund  second,  was  a  boy  in  the  family, 
and  much  in  company  with  these  prisoners.  His 
recollection  of  the  guests,  as  they  went  about  wear- 
ing their  side-arms,  was  very  vivid  ;  and  he  fre- 
quently furnished  the  evening's  entertainment  for 
us  children,  as  we  sat  about  the  open  fire,  by  tell- 
ing the  stories  of  those  disappointed  men  who  had 
been  obliged  to  surrender.  They  provided  their 
own  support  and  had  attendants,  as  was  frequently 
the  case  with  the  British  and  German  officers  when 
in  this  country.  These  had  dogs  with  them,  called 
by  the  names  of  Barstow  and  Bisbee.  Our  boy 
nature  was  greatly  aroused  by  the  incidents  in 
which  these  dogs  played  a  part."  It  is  claimed 
that  these  officers  were  permitted  to  meet  at  a 
certain  place  once  a  week  for  friendly  conference, 
a  monument  having  been  erected  to  commemorate 
the  tradition.  The  story  by  Mr.  Bancroft,  of  quar- 
tering the  officers  in  the  remote  towns,  is  strength- 
ened by  the  history  of  the  times  ;  and  Longfellow 

^   For  narrative  see  subsequent  chapter. 


gives  US  a  glimpse  of  their  dogs  in  "The  Open 
Window,"  — 

"  The  large  Newfoundland  house-dog  was  standing  by  the  door.'' 

Among  the  many  family  mementoes  of  the  Ban- 
croft home  proudly  shown  by  the  Edmund  of  to- 
day is  the  powder-horn  carried  by  his  grandfather 
in  the  fight.  It  is  elaborately  carved,  and  bears 
the  initials  "  E.  B.,"  with  dates,  etc.  As  evidence 
of  an  inheritance  of  the  family  military  spirit  on 
the  part  of  the  one  who  now  bears  the  name,  ap- 
pears the  record  of  service  of  Edmund  the  third 
as  major  of  a  regiment  of  militia  in  which  were 
the  Lowell  City  Guards,  when  Benjamin  F.  Butler 
was  a  lieutenant,  and  learned  military  tactics  of 
this  officer. 

Neither  the  deaths  at  Bunker  Hill,  nor  the  loss 
of  their  patriotic  minister  in  the  cause  of  free- 
dom, deterred  the  men  of  the  town  from  respond- 
ing to  the  successive  calls  for  service  and  money. 
At  first  it  was  necessary  that  a  man  should  be  of 
full  height,  of  age,  and  of  good  health,  to  ''  pass 
muster ;  "  but  there  came  a  time  when  it  was  not  so 
easy  to  keep  the  depleted  ranks  of  the  Continen- 
tal army  full,  and  men  were  accepted  although  not 
recorded  as  "liable  to  do  military  duty."  Boys 
were  admitted  who  had  prematurely  reached  the 
stature  of  manhood,  although  they  had  not  attained 
the  age  of  sixteen  years.  Edmund  Blood  of  Pep- 
perell   was  found   in   the  service  when  yet  in  his 


teens.  He  was  but  eleven  years  of  age  when  the 
Lexington  alarm  called  the  people  of  Pepperell  to 
action  ;  but  fired  with  the  spirit  so  generally  per- 
vading the  town,  he  anxiously  waited  the  time 
when  he,  too,  could  enter  the  service,  and  seized 
the  first  opportunity,  which  was  the  call  of  June, 
1780.  He  is  recorded  as  of  light  complexion,  and 
"5  ft.,  7  in."  in  stature.  His  service  was  at 
North  River,  New  York.  Having  served  out  his 
time,  he  returned  to  his  home  in  penury,  — the 
condition  to  which  a  large  share  of  the  soldiers 
were  reduced.  In  many  instances  they  were  dis- 
charged hundreds  of  miles  from  their  homes,  with 
no  provision  for  the  journey.  They  counted  them- 
selves fortunate  if  they  were  not  forced  to  make 
the  journey  on  foot,  with  not  even  as  much  as  a 
remnant  of  a  shoe  or  stocking,  thus  destitute  and 
weary  coming  back  to  the  old  home  to  share  the 
burden  of  debt  occasioned  by  the  war.  A  most 
convincing  proof  of  this  general  condition  of  dis- 
charged soldiers  is  found  in  the  family  home  of 
Edmund  Blood  at  Pepperell.  A  son  of  the  young 
soldier,  bearing  his  father's  name  and  culivating 
his  paternal  acres,  has  a  discharge  paper, — his 
father's  passport  from  Fishkill,  N.Y.,  to  Pepper- 
ell, Mass. 

Mr.  Blood  of  to-day  is  but  sixty  years  of  age,  yet 
is  one  of  the  few  living  children  of  a  soldier  of  the 
Revolution  who  has  had  the  tale  of  personal  ex- 
perience from  his  father's  lips. 


"  I  marched  July  4,  1780,  arrived  at  Springfield  July  8,  and 
went  on  to  New  York.  1  was  in  the  Eighth  Division,  under 
Ebenezer  Kent,  and  chiefly  occupied  in  doing  guard  duty.  1 
frequently  saw  Washington,  and  early  learned  to  admire  his 
manly  form,  open,  frank  countenance,  and  uniform  courtesy 
to  all,  regardless  of  rank.  When  we  were  discharged,  Dec. 
5,  1780,  each  received  a  written  certificate  bearing  the  sig- 
nature of  the  Colonel.  This  was  proof  that  we  were  not 
deserters,  and  also  a  recommendation  to  the  charity  of  the 
farmers,  whose  aid  we  sorely  needed.  We  had  no  money  of 
any  sort,  and  when  we  were  finally  paid  off,  it  was  in  the 
worthless  currency,  which  had  nothing  but  bulk  to  commend 

Discharge  of  Edmund  Blood 

This  slip  of  paper,  carried  by  Edmund  Blood  in 
his  waistcoat  pocket  from  Fishkill  to  Pepperell,  has 
been  kept  in  the  home  where  the  returned  soldier 
put  it,  and  is  prima  facie  evidence  of  what  many 
have  accepted  as  doubtful  tradition. 

It  would  seem  as  though  this  experience  were 


enough  to  satisfy  the  young  man's  love  of  adven- 
ture, but  Edmund  Blood  soon  appears  with  twenty 
of  his  townsmen  in  the  privateer  service.^  A 
statement  of  his  final  settlement  with  Captain 
Manley,  showing  his  share  in  prizes  captured,  is 

The  Blood  Homestead 

one  of  the  family  treasures  at  the  Blood  home- 
stead, from  which  comes  the  Pepperell  spring 
water,  now  being  shipped  to  the  same  State  in 
which  the  young  soldier  did  service  for  his  coun- 

1   See   Story  of   Privnteerint^  in   this  series. 



When  we  assumed  the  soldier,  we  did  not  lay  aside  the  citizen. 

George    Washington. 




JOHN  " 

Further  research  in  the  town  of  Pepperell 
brought  me  to  the  Williams  home,  where  I  was 
met  by  a  busy  farmer,  Mr.  Luther  H.  Williams, 
who  carries  on  the  farm  which  his  father  and 
grandfather  conducted  before  him. 

"  My  grandfather,  Isaac  Parker,"  said  the  owner, 
''was  one  of  Colonel  Prescott's  regiment.  He 
was  in  Captain  John  Nutting's  company,  responded 
to  the  Lexington  alarm,  and  was  in  the  battle  of 
June  17th.  My  grandparents  frequently  rehearsed 
the  experiences  of  that  time,  in  which  this  town 
had  a  creditable  part.  Grandmother,  who  lived 
to  be  ninety  years  of  age,  forgetting  for  the  time 
the  age  of  her  grandchildren,  would  say  to  me,  a 
restless  boy  to  be  amused,  '  Do  you  remember  the 
battles  of  Concord  and  Bunker  Hill  .?     I  do  ;   I  re- 



member  how  the  guns  roared,  for  I  heard  them  on 
the  day  of  the  battle  at  Charlestown,  when  so  many 
of  our  folks  were  killed.'  " 

My  next  halt  was  at  the  Parker  home,  where  five 
generations  of  the  name  have  made  a  record.  The 
last  are  the  children  of  Charles  S.  Parker,  who  now 
conducts  the  farm.      The  line  running  backward 


Old   Parker  Ploujh 

from  the  present  owner  is  Allen  S.  Parker,  his 
father,  Thomas,  his  grandfather,  and  Nathaniel 
Parker,  whose  name  is  found  among  those  who  did 
valiant  service  on  Bunker  Hill.  Says  Mr.  Parker, 
"  My  great-grandfather  was  ploughing  in  the  field 
when  the  April  alarm  was  sounded  ;  and  he  lost 
no  time  in  preparation,  but  left  his  team,  took  his 
gun,  and  started.  We  have  kept  the  old  plough 
here  on  the  farm  as  a  reminder  of  that  day,  and 
also  to  show  by  way  of  contrast  the  progress  that 


has  been  made  in  farm  implements  since  the  Par- 
kers first  be2:an  to  cultivate  these  acres."  The 
plough  that  belonged  to  the  soldier  ancestor  was 
brought  from  its  hiding-place  ;  and  a  picture  was 
taken  of  it,  together  with  the  chain  in  use  at  the 
same  time. 

A  superficial  student  of  the  history  of  Pepperell 
cannot  fail  to  be  impressed  with  the  consanguinity 
of  its  people  from  the  earliest  settlement  to  the 
present  time.  Shattuck  and  Blood  have  been  pre- 
dominant names.  They  owned  large  tracts  of  land 
on  both  sides  of  the  Nashua  River,  suffered  greatly 
from  the  depredations  of  the  Indians,  and  were 
well  trained  in  warfare  long  before  the  Revolution. 
*'  Few  persons  nowadays  can  have  an  accurate 
conception  of  the  toil,  suffering,  and  dangers  en- 
dured by  the  early  settlers  of  our  frontier  New 
England  towns.  The  workmen  as  they  went  forth 
to  their  labors  were  not  sure  of  returning  again  in 
safety  to  their  homes,  or,  if  they  did,  that  they 
should  find  their  loved  ones  alive.  The  toma- 
hawk, scalping-knife,  and  other  deadly  weapons, 
were  in  the  hands  of  foes  whose  approach  was 
often  stealthy  and  when  least  expected." 

Two  of  the  grandsons  of  the  iirst  William  Shat- 
tuck settled  in  that  part  of  Groton  which  became 
Pepperell.  They  were  allied  with  the  Bloods 
through  marriage  ;  and  so  common  were  the  two 
names,  that  it  was  said  a  stranger  in  the  place  was 
perfectly  safe  in  addressing  a  citizen  as  Mr.  Shat- 



tuck,  and,  if  failing  of  recognition,  turning  to  the 
name  of  Blood.  ''  Rev.  Mr.  Emerson  is  said  to 
have  remarked,  that  *  he  sometimes  regretted  that 
he  did  not  marry  a  Shattuck,  for  he  should  then 
have  been  related  to  the  whole  town.'  "  The 
widow  of  the  regretful  minister's  son  Joseph,  how- 

COLONEL    SllATTUCK'S    lluMH,    I'^l'l'liKKLL 

ever,  made  amends  for  the  mistake  by  marrying 
Calvin  Shattuck  in   iSii.^ 

The  town  furnishes  no  more  favorable  vantage- 
ground  for  tracing  the  footprints  of  the  patriots 

1  The  Bloods  were  of  that  family  early  found  in  Concord,  Mass., 
to  which  reference  has  been  made  in  "  Beneath  Old  Roof  Trees." 

THE  si/ArrucKS  59 

in  these  families  than  the  home  of  Colonel  Samuel 
Pepperell  Shattuck  ;  the  beautiful  house  of  the 
present  day  identifies  that  of  John  Shattuck,  which 
was  one  of  the  garrison  houses  maintained  as  late 
as  1750.  The  owner  was  called  "  Canada  John," 
because  occupying  the  outpost  between  civiliza- 
tion in  the  Colony  and  Canada  ;  and  doubtless  the 
name  distinguished  the  garrison-keeper  from  other 
John  Shattucks.  A  large  elm-tree  now  on  the 
place  is  said  to  have  sprung  up  through  the  stone 
chimney  of  the  old  garrison  when  gone  to  decay. 
Colonel  Shattuck,  the  present  occupant  of  this 
old  estate,  represents  the  younger  branch  of  the 
original  settler's  family  ;  while  Mrs.  Shattuck,  who 
was  a  Shattuck  before  marriage,  represents  the 
older  branch.  In  company  with  Colonel  and  Mrs. 
Shattuck,  both  worthy  descendants  of  a  self-sacri- 
ficing ancestry  who  have  left  footprints  on  the 
sands  of  time,  I  gathered  facts  of  peculiar  inter- 
est. In  driving  through  the  centre  of  the  town, 
Mrs.  Shattuck  proudly  remarked  that  "here  is 
where  our  grandmothers  met  and  publicly  burned 
their  tea,  thus  following  the  example  of  the  pa- 
triots of  Charlestown,  Providence,  R.I.,  and  other 
towns,  when  the  king  was  trying  to  force  them  to 

The  relations  between  the  Pepperell  minister 
and  his  people  at  the  opening  of  the  Revolution 
are  brought  vividly  to  mind  when  calling  at  the 
old  Shattuck   home,  and   listening  to   the  family 


story  from  Augustus  L.  Shattuck :  "My  grand- 
father, Jonathan  Shattuck,  was  a  millwright.  In 
company  with  his  neighbors  he  started  from  home 
in  response  to  the  Lexington  alarm,  but  was  told 
by  his  far-seeing  minister  that  his  place  was  at 
home,  because  much  of  the  supplies  for  the  army 
depended  upon  the  millers  ;  hence  grandfather  re- 
turned, hung  up  his  gun,  and  went  to  work  in  the 
mill."  It  will  be  remembered  that  during  the 
early  months  of  the  war  the  patriot  army  was  sup- 
plied by  contributions  from  the  families.  There 
consequently  was  but  little  uniformity  in  the  ra- 
tions. One  good  woman  of  Pepperell,  familiar  with 
the  Bible  account  of  David  taking  ten  cheeses  into 
the  camp  of  the  Israelites,^  insisted  upon  sending 
a  cheese  of  her  make  to  her  son  in  camp  at  Cam- 
bridge, by  a  neighbor,  who  was  returning  from  the 
town  after  a  furlough. 

In  our  drive  about  the  town  we  came  to  the 
crossroads  where  it  is  alleged  a  Pepperell  woman 
met  her  husband  on  that  April  morning,  and  deliv- 
ered to  him  his  coat,  with  admonitions  to  make 
haste,  for  the  Regulars  are  out.  Passing  a  fertile 
field,  I  was  told  that  "Jeremiah  Shattuck  was 
working  here  when  he  heard  the  alarm  gun  ;  and 
he  instantly  left  all,  jumped  the  fence,  joined  the 
company,  went  to  Cambridge,  and  gave  up  his  life 
at  Bunker  Hill  with  other  Pepperell  men." 

There  are  but  few  houses  in  the  town  that  have 

1  I  Sam.  xvii.  1 8. 


not  undergone  radical  changes  since  the  Revolu- 
tion, but  there  is  one  at  the  corner  of  Pepperell 
and  Tovvnsend  which  remains  much  the  same  as 
when  the  roaring  of  the  cannon  on  Bunker  Hill 
was  heard  at  its  door.  Joseph  Warner  was  the 
first  of  the  family  on  the  place  ;  he  took  up  his 
abode  there  in  1777,  when  his  son  Richard  was 
eight  years  of  age.  Both  completed  their  lives  at 
this  farm,  and  were  followed  by  the  present  occu- 
pant, who  is  Walter  Warner;  he  is  eighty-six  years 
old,  and  conducts  the  business  of  the  farm  after 
the  plan  followed  by  his  father.  Mr.  Warner  of 
to-day  recalls  with  interest  the  story  told  him  by 
his  father,  who,  as  a  boy  in  the  centre  of  Pepper- 
ell, watched  the  gathering  of  the  minute-men  and 
their  hasty  departure  in  martial  manner  on  April 
19'  1775-  The  impression  made  on  the  youthful 
mind  by  the  report  that  many  of  the  townsmen 
had  been  killed  at  Bunker  Hill,  and  more  were 
wounded,  was  one  that  remained  as  long  as  life 
lasted  ;  and  the  oft-repeated  story  has  found  lodg- 
ment in  the  memory  of  Walter  Warner.  His  nat- 
ural aversion  to  anything  modern  inclines  him  to 
derive  the  most  complete  satisfaction  from  the 
recollections  of  his  youth. 

Our  further  drive  about  the  town  brought  us  to 
Jewett's  Bridge,  which  spans  the  Nashua  River. 
Colonel-  Shattuck  reminded  us  of  the  bravery 
of  his  patriotic  grand-aunt,  Mrs.  David  Wright, 
who  with  an  associate,  Mrs.  Job  Shattuck,  posted 



themselves  here,  and  arrested  Captain  Leonard 
Whiting,  a  noted  Tory,  the  bearer  of  treasonable 
despatches  from  Canada  to  Boston  (see  *' Woman  in 
the  Revolution  ").  Passing  down  the  river  road, 
which  winds  gracefully  through  the  town,  follow- 
ing  the   course  of   the   Nashua,  we   came  to  the 

place  where  an  earlier 
patriot  made  a  record 
that  will  endure  as 
long  as  the  history 
of  the  New  England 
Colonies  is  read.  It 
was  at  this  place  that 
John  Chamberlain 
killed  young  Paugus, 
and  saved  his  own 
life.  While  this  story 
is  of  days  that  pre- 
ceded the  Revolu- 
tion, the  descendants 
of  the  hero  were  ac- 
tive in  the  war  for 
independence,  and  are  represented  to-day  in  the 
town,  one  of  my  venerable  guides,  Mrs.  Shattuck, 
being  a  grand-niece  of  John  Chamberlain. 

Colonel  Samuel  P.  Shattuck 


Condeiised  froju  published  reports. 

John    Chamberlain    was   one   of   Captain    Love- 
well's  company  in  the  famous  fight  with  the  In- 

SrOKY  OF  /'AUG us  JOHN 


dians  in  1725  near  Fryeburg,  Me.  In  the  general 
engagement  John's  gun  became  foul,  and  he  went 
to  the  edge  of  the  pond  to  wash  it  out.  While 
there  he  discovered  Paugus,  the  chief,  engaged  in 
the  same  act.  Chamberlain  had  personal  acquaint- 
ance with  Paugus,  and  they  at  once  resolved  to  see 
who  should  be  the 
survivor  of  the  hour. 
"  Now,  Paugus,"  said  "v  ■ 

Chamberlain,  ''I'll 
have  you  ;  "  and  with 
the  spirit  of  an  old 
hunter  sprang  to 
loading  his  rifle. 
"Na  —  na,  me  have 
you,"  said  Paugus ; 
and  he  handled  his 
gun  with  a  dexterity 
that  made  the  bold 
heart  of  Chamber- 
lain beat  quick,  and 
he  almost  raised  his 

eye  to  take  his  last  look  upon  the  sun.  They 
rammed  their  cartridges,  and  each  at  the  same 
instant  cast  his  ramrod  upon  the  sand.  "I'll 
have  you,  Paugus,",  repeated  Chamberlain,  as  in 
his  desperation  he  almost  resolved  to  rush  upon 
the  savage  with  the  breech  of  his  rifle,  lest  he 
should  receive  his  bullets  before  he  could  load. 
Paugus  trembled  as  he  applied  his  powder-horn  to 

Mks.  Samuel  P.  Shattuck 


the  priming.  Chamberlain  heard  the  grains  of  his 
powder  rattle  lightly  upon  the  leaves  beneath  his 
feet  ;  he  struck  his  gun-breech  violently  upon  the 
ground,  the  rifle  "primed  herself,"  he  aimed,  and 
his  bullets  whistled  through  the  heart  of  Paugus. 
As  the  chief  fell,  the  bullet  from  the  mouth  of  his 
ascending  rifle  touched  the  hair  upon  the  crown  of 
Chamberlain,  and  passed  off  without  avenging  the 
death  of  its  dreadful  master. 

The  children  and  successors  of  Paugus,  long 
after  this  event,  determined  to  avenge  the  death 
of  the  chief.  They  entertained  the  opinion  that 
whoever  should  kill  Chamberlain  would  be  consid- 
ered the  greatest  chief  of  the  nation  ;  and  they 
made  several  attempts  to  do  it,  the  last  one  having 
taken  place  at  the  Nashua  River  in  Pepperell, 
where  Chamberlain  had  a  mill. 

In   the   year ,  towards  the  close  of  one  of 

those  fair  days  in  autumn  which  make  up  the  *'  In- 
dian summer,"  a  number  of  the  villagers  of  Groton 
had  gathered  in  their  one-story  tavern  to  talk  over 
their  little  politics,  as  was  their  custom,  when  they 
were  surprised  and  startled  by  the  entrance  of  a 
voune:  Indian  amonir  them.  An  Indian  at  that 
time  was  a  rarity  in  the  town.  He  was  tall,  over 
six  feet,  and  finely  formed,  after  the  fashion  of 
the  forest.  He  had  a  belt  of  wampum  around  his 
waist,  and  from  it  hung  his  tomahawk.  A  long 
gun  was  in  his  hand  ;  and  he  stood  in  moccasins, 
with  the  grace  and  dignity  of  the  son  of  a  chief. 

6-  TOR  Y  OF  PA  UG  US  JOHN  6  5 

He  placed  his  gun  behind  the  door,  and  silently 
took  his  seat  by  himself,  A  little  before  sunset 
the  farmers  left  the  inn,  and  returned  to  their 
homes.  An  old  hunter  remained  with  the  land- 
lord and  the  young  savage.  The  hunter  eyed  the 
Indian  with  keen  attention  ;  his  suspicions  were 
aroused  at  the  sight  of  this  warrior,  armed,  so  re- 
mote from  the  residence  of  the  nearest  tribe,  and 
in  a  time  of  peace.  He  was  acquainted  with  the 
Indians  in  the  old  wars  ;  and  his  suspicions  were 
heightened  and  confirmed  when  he  heard  the 
young  chief  ask  the  landlord,  in  a  low  and  indiffer- 
ent tone,  if  ''  one  Chamberlain  dwelt  in  the  vil- 
lage." The  landlord  pointed  out  to  him  the  mill 
where  the  old  man  labored,  and  the  cottage  where 
he  dwelt.  The  Indian  took  his  gun,  and  went 
out.  "  Some  of  the  blood  of  old  Paugus,"  said 
the  hunter,  "and,  I'll  venture  my  life,  come  to 
avenge  the  death  of  that  chief  upon  Chamberlain. 
I'll  give  the  old  man  warning."  He  stepped  out, 
and  made  haste  to  the  mill  where  the  old  man 
was  still  at  his  toils,  and  made  known  his  suspi- 
cions. Chamberlain's  cheek  turned  ashy  pale;  and 
he  sternly  replied,  "Tell  young  Paugus  I  have  the 
gun  that  slew  his  father,  and  he  had  far  better  re- 
turn to  his  forest  than  molest  me  in  my  old  age." 
As  he  spoke  he  pointed  out  the  long  gun  as  it 
hung  upon  prongs  of  the  moose-horn,  driven  into 
the  sawmill  plate  ;  and  near  it  was  suspended  the 
bullet-pouch  and   powder-horn  of  the  same   cam- 


paign.  After  giving  his  warning  the  hunter  re- 
tired. Chamberlain  took  down  his  gun,  tried  his 
flint,  charged  it,  took  the  pouch  and  horn  and  flung 
them  upon  his  side,  hung  up  near  the  saw-gate 
the  old  garment  he  had  worn  at  work  through  the 
day,  hoisted  the  gate  of  the  mill  and  set  the  wheel 
in  motion,  looked  keenly  around  him  in  every  di- 
rection, and  retired  to  an  eminence  a  few  rods  dis- 
tant, crowned  with  a  clump  of  thick  bushes,  and 
crouched  down  to  await  the  approach  of  his  mys- 
terious enemy.  He  was  not,  however,  mysterious 
to  Chamberlain.  The  old  man  remembered  every 
trait  in  the  Indian  character,  and  calculated  with 
great  accuracy  as  to  the  time  and  manner  of  Pau- 
gus's  advance.  Just  as  it  was  growing  too  dusky 
to  distinguish  a  human  form,  except  towards  the 
west,  the  old  man  descried  him  creeping  cautiously 
from  a  bunch  of  bushes,  eight  or  ten  rods  above 
the  mill,  by  the  torrent,  with  his  cocked  rifle  be- 
fore him,  and  his  hand  upon  the  lock.  The  young 
savage  heard  the  noise  of  the  saw-frame,  and  could 
discern  it  in  rapid  motion,  and  shrunk  back  into 
the  thicket.  He  came  out  again,  a  little  distance 
from  where  he  entered,  and,  with  the  wary  motions 
of  the  ambush,  reconnoitred  the  mill.  Chamber- 
lain marking  him  all  the  while.  Young  Paugus 
came  out  of  the  bushes  the  third  time,  and  in  a 
new  quarter,  and  was  stealthily  advancing  when 
something  seemed  to  catch  his  eye  in  the  form  of 
his  father's  sla}'er.      He  stopped  short,  brough,t  his 


rifle  to  his  eye,  and  with  quick  aim  fired.  The  re- 
port rang  sharp  and  low  upon  the  still  air,  as  if  the 
gun  itself  were  muffled,  or  afraid  to  speak  above 
its  breath.  Young  Paugus  crept  out  upon  a  mill- 
log  that  extended  over  the  rapid,  and  stretched 
himself  up  to  his  full  height,  as  if  to  ascertain, 
without  advancing,  the  success  of  his  shot.  The 
old  man  could  spare  him  no  longer.  He  saw 
the  well-remembered  form  of  the  old  chief,  as  the 
young  savage  stood  against  the  western  sky,  which 
was  still  red  with  the  rays  of  the  sunken  sun.  He 
levelled  the  fatal  gun;  it  blazed;  young  Paugus 
leaped  into  the  air  as  the  ball  whistled  through  his 
heart,  and  his  lifeless  body  fell  far  down  into  the 
rapid  that  foamed  below  him,  while  his  vengeful 
spirit  fled  and  mingled  with  that  sterner  one  which 
parted  long  before  at  Lovewell's  Pond.  The  next 
morning  a  bullet-hole  through  the  centre  of  the  old 
garment  he  had  hung  at  the  saw-frame  admonished 
him  that  the  aim,  as  well  as  the  vengeance,  of  old 
Paugus  had  descended  to  his  son. 

Standing  near  the  spot  where  John  Chamberlain 
killed  young  Paugus,  the  water  of  the  same  stream 
still  coursing  by,  I  could  but  hear  in  their  gentle 
ripple,  — 

"For  men  may  come,  and  men  may  go, 
But  I  go  on   forever." 

The  story  of  the  narrow  escape  of  John  Chamber- 
lain from  the  avenging  hand  of  young  Paugus  led 
to  the  display  of  some  rude  articles   of  domestic 



use,  treasured  by  my  guides  in  the  home  as  me- 
mentoes of  the  time  when  their  ancestor  plied  the 
craft  of  a  miller  in  this  town.  Together  with  the 
small  articles  was  brought  forward  the  long  chest, 
or  magazine,  kept  previous  to  and  during  the  Rev- 
olution in  the  upper  loft  of  the  meeting-house  ;  and 
in  it  were  stored  the  town's  supply  of  powder,  balls, 
flints,  etc.    From  it,  doubtless,  were  filled  the  pow- 

Pepperell  Magazine 

der-horns  of  the  eighty-four  men  who  went  from 
the  town  with  Colonel  Prescott  on  April  19,  1775. 
Surely  the  ancient  magazine  has  become  the  prop- 
erty of  the  right  man  ;  for  Colonel  Samuel  P.  Shat- 
tuck  is  of  himself  the  embodiment  of  military  zeal, 
having  served  in  the  State  militia  from  the  rank  of 
private  to  that  of  colonel  in  the  Sixth  Regiment. 
The  names  of  the  pioneers  of  the  town  were 
prominent  during  the  Revolution  and  in  later  wars. 



There  were  nine  Shattucks  in  Colonel  Prescott's 
regiment  from  Pepperell,  while  Bloods  and  Cham- 
berlains were  numerous.  These  and  the  other 
patriots  of  that  town  are  still  met  in  the  form  of 
their  descendants  on  the  same  estates  from  which 
they  made  a  hasty  departure  on  April  19,  1775.  On 
the  lid  of  the  maofazine  is  read  the  foUovvinir  :  — 

o  o 

"  Joseph  Warner 
Returned  his  powder 

&  Balls.  Deken    Blods    sun    reed    8  —  o  —  2 

Joseph  Warner  sun    "       o  —  2  —  7  "' 

*  '^  i 



Edmund  H.  N.  Blood,  Pepperell 








We  call  them  savage,  O.  be  just ! 

Their  outraged  feelings  scan  ; 

A  voice  comes  forth,  —  'tis  from  the  dust, — 

The  savage  was  a  man  ! 

Think  ye  he  loved  not.?     Wiio  stood  by, 

And  in  his  toils  took  part  ? 

Woman  was  there  to  bless  his  eye. — 

The  savage  had  a  heart  ! 

Think  ye  he  prayed  not  ?     When  on  high 

He  heard  the  thunders  roll, 

\Yhat  bade  him  look  beyond  the  sky  ? 

The  savage  had  a  soul  ! 

My  researches  in  this  part  of  Old  Groton  were 
under  the  direction  of  Mr.  John  E.  L.  Hazen,  a 
lineal  descendant  of  the  heroes  of  the  early  wars 
and  also  of  the  Revolution.  Two  families  promi- 
nent in  the  beginning  of  the  record  of  Shirley 
were  Longley  and  Hazen.  They  have  continued 
in  prominence  and  influence  during  the  almost 
century  and  a  half  of  the  town's  corporate  exist- 



The  romance  of  history  appears  in  all  its  fasci- 
nation in  the  story  of  early  members  of  the  Long- 
ley  family.  We  are  fortunate  in  having  the  record 
from  direct  descendants,  who  cultivate  the  acres 
reclaimed  by  their  ancestors  when  the  musket  was 
the  yeoman's  constant  companion.  William  Long- 
ley,  son  of  Richard  of  Lynn,  located  in  Groton  as 

Hazen  Home,  Shirley 

early  as  1659.  His  wife  Joanna  was  sister  to 
Deputy  Governor  Thomas  Goff,  and  with  her  hus- 
band shared  the  hardships  of  frontier  life.  The 
first  William  lived  until  King  Philip  had  made  his 
last  desperate  effort  to  exterminate  the  white  set- 
tlers. William  Longley,  the  second  clerk  of  the 
town,  suffered  more  severely  at  the  hands  of  the 
Indians.     It  was  in  1694  that  several  of  the  fam- 


ily  fell  victims  to  the  savage  hand  of  the  lurking 

"The  Indians,  having  lurked  about  the  premises 
undiscovered  the  day  previous  to  the  slaughter 
watching  a  favorable  opportunity  to  effect  their 
purpose,  early  in  the  morning  of  the  fatal  day 
turned  the  cattle  out  of  the  barnyard  into  a  corn- 
field, and  lay  in  ambush.  This  trick  had  the 
desired  effect  to  draw  out  some  of  the  familv, 
probably  Mr.  Longley  and  his  sons,  unarmed,  to 
drive  the  cattle  from  the  corn.  The  Indians  then 
rose  upon  them,  and  killed  or  captured  the  whole 
family.  It  is  said,  however,  that  Jemima,  a  daugh- 
ter of  Mr.  Longley  whom  they  had  tomahawked 
and  scalped,  was  found  alive,  sitting  upon  a  rock, 
and  that  she  survived  many  years,  married,  and 
had  children."  Three  who  escaped  the  tomahawk 
were  carried  away  into  captivity.  Betty  died  there 
of  starvation.  Lydia  was  sold  to  the  French  in 
Canada,  and  never  returned  to  her  people.  It  re- 
mained for  John  to  perpetuate  the  name  in  this 
line  of  the  family.  He  was  about  twelve  years  of 
age  when  his  family  was  massacred,  and  himself 
carried  into  captivity  by  the  savages. 

An  interesting  incident  of  the  life  of  this  boy  is 
told  by  his  descendants.  Says  Melvin  W.  Long- 
ley,  ''  My  grandsire,  John  Longley,  after  going 
some  distance  from  the  old  home  with  his  captors, 
when  they  came  to  a  halt  told  the  Indians  that 
his  father's  sheep  were  shut  up  in  the  barn,  and 


would  Starve  unless  they  would  permit  him  to  go 
back  and  release  them,  and  that  having  done  this 
he  would  at  once  return  to  them.  They  allowed 
the  boy  to  go,  and  he  kept  his  promise.  My 
ancestor  pursued  a  wild  life  with  his  captors  five 
years,  when  he  was  ransomed  by  the  government. 
The  romance  of  his  captive  state  was  not  alto- 
gether averse  to  him,  and  it  required  some  time  to 
accustom  himself  to  life  in  Groton  after  his  return 
to  his  native  town.  He  became  a  useful  citizen, 
being  clerk  of  the  town  for  six  years,  and  was 
thrice  elected  as  representative  to  the  General 
Court.  He  was  a  deacon  of  the  church  twenty- 
eight  years." 

John  Longley  married  Sarah  Prescott,  an  aunt 
of  Col.  William  Prescott,  and  subsequently  married 
Deborah  Houghton. 

It  is  apparent  that  the  stronger  characteristics 
of  this  family  were  perpetuated  through  succes- 
sive generations.  Mr.  Longley's  three  eldest  sons 
manifested  the  greatest  bravery  and  perseverance 
in  overcoming  all  obstacles  and  establishing  homes 
on  a  section  of  the  original  grant.  William,  the 
eldest  of  the  three  Shirley  emigrants,  settled  in 
the  south  part  of  the  town,  and  together  with 
Samuel  Hazen,  the  founder  of  the  other  pioneer 
family,  set  up  the  first  grist-mill  in  the  place.  In 
my  tour  about  Shirley  I  was  early  directed  to  the 
site  of  the  mill,  which  is  still  of  interest  to  the 
descendants  of  the  first  proprietors.     The  waters 



of  the  Catacunemaug  still  ripple  through  the  mea- 
dows as  when  the 
early  millers  util- 
ized the  pure 
stream  ;  and  some 
of  the  primeval 
oaks  shed  their 
autumnal  foliage 
upon  the  smooth, 
glassy  surface  as 
when  William 
Longley  turned 
out  his  grist  a  cen- 
tury and  a  half 

The  influence  of 
the  hearth-stone 
narratives  of  the 
redeemed  captive 
and  father  upon 
the  Longley-Pres- 
cott  children,  and 
upon  all  who  heard 
the  familiar  tales, 
may  best  be  judged 
by  tracing  the  acts 
of  the   patriots  of 

Shirley  Oak  that    tOWn. 

The  Indian  dep- 
redations had  ceased  before  the  incorporation  of 


Shirley  ;  yet  the  French  war,  which  terminated 
in  the  surrender  of  the  Canadas  to  the  English 
government,  was  still  being  waged,  and  the 
town's  first  human  sacrifice  in  that  struggle  was 
Joseph  Longley,  who  was  wounded  at  Fort  Wil- 
liam Henry,  and  died  at  Greenbush,  N.  Y.,  in 
1758.  He  was  first  selectman  and  town  clerk. 
That  spirit  which  prompted  them  to  fight  for  the 
king  impelled  them  to  take  up  arms  against  him 
when  such  a  course  was  needed  to  sustain  the 
rights  and  liberties  of  the  Colonies.  The  Stamp 
Act  brought  them  to  action.  They  held  a  town 
meeting  October  18,  1765,  and  unanimously  in- 
structed their  representative,  who  was  Abel  Law- 
rence, Esq. :  — 

"  Is  it  a  matter  of  wonder  that  every  thinking  person  in  the 
Colonies  of  North  America  is  greatly  alarmed  by  the  late  act 
of  Parliament,  called  the  Stamp  Act,  as  it  affects  the  state  and 
liberty  of  every  loyal  subject  of  said  Colonies?  .  .  .  We  look 
upon  said  act  as  a  burden,  grievous,  distressing  and  insup- 
portable ;  not  only  likely  to  enslave  the  present  but  future 
generations.  The  great  and  heavy  load  lying  upon  us,  oc- 
casioned by  the  late  war,  with  its  increasing  interest,  and  all 
other  incidental  charges  at  home  for  the  support  of  the  gov- 
ernment, &c.,  have  sunk  us  so  low  already  that  we  are 
wholly  unable  to  bear  the  duties  imposed  upon  us  by  the 
stamp  act,  which,  if  it  takes  place,  must  and  will  immedi- 
ately prove  our  certain  ruin.  .  .  .  We  are  far  from  saying 
or  acting  anything  whereby  we  might  be  charged  with  dis- 
loyalty, as  subjects  to  the  best  of  kings,  or  that  we  have  not 
a  proper  sense  of  the  British  Court,  but  we  do  think  that 
our  charter  privileges,  and  natural  rights,  as  the'  free-born 


sons  of  Britain,  are  infringed  upon  by  said  stamp  act.  Our 
advice,  instruction  and  direction,  therefore,  to  you  is,  that 
upon  all  proper  occasions  you  use  and  exercise  your  utmost 
endeavors,  and  strongest  efiforts,  in  a  modest,  becoming  and 
respectful  manner,  to  prevent  said  act  from  taking  place  in 
the  government ;  and  that  you  with  a  watchful  eye,  upon 
every  occasion,  diligently  guard  and  protect  the  liberties  of 
your  country,  to  the  utmost  of  your  power,  against  all  en- 
croachments and  innovations.   .   .    . 

By  order  of  the  Committee, 

John  Longley." 

On  January  ii,  1/73,  the  people  indorsed  the 
act  of  the  Committee  of  Correspondence  in  Bos- 
ton, saying,  — 

"  We  are  fully  persuaded,  if  the  Judges  of  the  Superior 
Court  of  this  Province  have  their  salaries  from  the  king,  .  .  . 
that  our  liberties  are  greatly  infringed  thereby,  and  that  we 
shall  have  no  better  chance  for  justice,  no  better  security  of 
life  and  property,  than  the  people  have  in  the  most  des- 
potic government  under  heaven.'"  They  further  say  "  that 
our  grateful  acknowledgments  are  due  to  the  inhabitants  of 
the  town  of  Boston,  for  their  vigilance  upon  this  and  many 
other  occasions  of  like  nature. 

John  Longley,  Dis.  Clerk.'''' 

The  passage  of  the  act  on  tea  by  the  British 
Parliament  brought  out  the  people  of  Shirley  in 
a  series  of  resolutions,  which  bear  the  impress  of 
decided  patriots.  They  stand  out  upon  the  town 
book  in  bold  hand.     Art.  I,  is:  — 

''Voted,  that  we  will  neither  buy,  nor  sell,  nor  drink  (nor 
suffer  it  to  be  drunk  in  any  of  our  families)  any  tea  that  is 
subject  to%n  American  duty."' 


The  name  of  Obadiah  Sawtell,  anotlicr  patriot, 
appears  as  district  clerk  at  the  conclusion  of  this 
series  of  resolutions. 

Thus  far  sympathy  and  acquiescence  with  the 
Boston  patriots  had  only  been  shown  by  words, 
but  the  Port  Bill  brought  out  something  more 
real.  They  held  a  town  meeting  on  January  i8, 
1775,  and  chose  a  committee  to  receive  donations 
for  the  poor  of  Boston  and  Charlestown.  The\" 
continued  in  sympathy  with  each  progressive  act 
of  the  people  of  the  lower  towns,  and  were  ready 
to  respond  to  the  alarm  of  April  19,  1775.  Every 
man  old  enough  to  bear  arms,  with  the  exception 
of  seven,  responded  to  the  messenger,  and  made 
haste  towards  the  scene  of  danger.  Eighty  names 
appear  upon  the  roll  of  the  Lexington  alarm  in 
command  of  Captain  Henry  Haskell,  and  thirty- 
five  appear  as  serving  for  eight  months  during 
the  siege  under  the  command  of  Captain  Robert 
Longley  of  Bolton.  They  were  in  the  regiments 
of  Colonels  Whitcomb  and  Prescdtt. 

Some  of  the  personal  experiences  of  the  soldiers 
of  this  town  are  told  by  their  descendants  on  the 
old  farms. 

Melvin  W.  Longley,  already  quoted,  was  met 
at  his  cheerful  farmhouse,  where  were  also  two 
sisters  of  the  same  generation.  Soon  after  the 
Revolution  this  house  "was  built  by  my  great- 
grandfather, Joshua  Longley,  on  a  part  of  the 
original  grant.     My   children   represent   the  fifth 


generation  who  have  gathered  about  the  old 
hearth-stone,  and  the  sixth  who  have  trodden 
these  acres,  while  three  earlier  generations  have 
lived  in  this  territory  when  it  was  included  in 
original  Groton."  The  first  of  these  was  William, 
the  proprietor  of  the  mill. 


William  Longley  the  father,  and  William  the 
son,  were  both  millers.  In  order  to  distinguish 
the  craftsmen,  the  good  farmers  of  the  locality, 
who  brought  their  grist  to  be  ground  at  the  mill 
on  the  Catacunemaug,  called  the  elder  ''Old  Will 
the  Miller."  No  disrespect  was  implied;  for  the 
rugged  yeomen  looked  upon  Old  Will  as  their 
great  benefactor.  He  had  been  the  first  to  set  up 
that  indispensable  institution,  a  mill,  thus  reliev- 
inc:  them  of  much  of  the  burden  of  life. 

The  Longley  and  Hazen  mill  was  rude  indeed, 
but  in  keeping  with  the  dwellings  of  the  farmers, 
made  as  they  were  from  rough-hewn  logs,  and  af- 
fording but  little  beyond  the  bare  necessities.  The 
farmers,  young  and  old,  delighted  in  listening  to 
Old  Will's  recitals  of  his  father's  experience  dur- 
ing the  five  years  of  his  life  in  captivity.  Wait- 
ing for  grist  was  no  hardship  for  them  if  Old  Will, 
dressed  in  powdered  apparel,  was  tending  the 
stones.  The  elder  William  was  a  sufferer  from 
rheumatism,  and  not  in  a  mood  for  story-telling 


at  all  times  ;  but  when  he  was  at  his  best  in  de- 
scribing the  life  among  the  Indians,  the  farmer's 
boy  was  reluctant  to  leave.  In  fact,  the  fathers 
were  known  to  tarry  long  after  Old  Will  had  taken 
his  toll,  and  emptied  a  fresh  sack  into  the  hopper. 

These  stories  of  savage  warfare  served  a  two- 
fold purpose.  They  amused  the  miller's  patrons, 
and  prevented  their  being  impatient  while  wait- 
ing their  turn,  and  also  kindled  a  fire  of  patriot- 
ism in  the  minds  of  the  farmers,  which  served  them 
well  when  the  time  came  for  opposing  the  king. 

The  news  of  the  Stamp  Act  aroused  the  miller 
to  a  high  state  of  indignation,  and  he  declared 
his  readiness  to  fight  against  all  such  oppression. 
The  Port  Bill  reanimated  his  spirit  of  patriotism, 
and  he  dipped  deep  into  his  toll-bin  for  the  aid  of 
the  poor  of  the  distressed  port. 

He  had  reached  almost  the  allotted  age  of  man 
when  the  Lexington  alarm  was  sounded  through 
the  town.  The  exemption  from  service  granted  to 
millers  was  no  excuse  for  him.  The  ardor  of  youth 
possessed  his  spirit  when  his  sons,  neighbors,  and 
friends  were  hastening  to  and  fro  in  preparation 
for  the  march.  But  his  bowed  and  crippled  form 
made  it  impossible  for  him  to  join  the  company; 
yet  he  insisted,  saying,  *'  True,  I  cannot  handle  a 
musket,  yet  I  will  fight  the  redcoats  with  my  two 
canes;"  at  the  same  time  brandishing  those  for- 
midable weapons  as  though  his  words  were  not  to 
be  disregarded.     He  reluctantly  remained  at  home 


with  the  few  wlio  were  compelled  to  st:iy  because 
of  age  or  infirmity.  But  no  citizen  of  the  town 
evinced  more  genuine  patriotism,  watched  the 
progress  of  the  war  with  more  interest,  or  mani- 
fested more  joy  when  the  yoke  of  oppression  was 
thrown  off,  than  did  Old  Will  the  miller. 

''Joshua,  son  of  *  Will  the  miller,'  my  great- 
grandfather, was  among  the  eighty  men  who 
marched  from  this  town  on  April  19,  1775,"  said 
the  present  occupant  of  the  estate.  "  He  remained 
in  the  camp  until  the  30th  of  the  month,  and  later 
entered  the  service  for  eight  months.  He  was  in 
the  battle  of  Bunker  Hill,  escaping  with  but  little 
injury."  At  this  point  of  the  narrative  a  cannon- 
ball  was  brought  forward  which  a  family  tradition 
says  was  fired  from  the  British  side,  and  when 
well-nigh  spent  carried  away  a  portion  of  the  skirt 
of  Joshua  Longley's  coat. 

''My  great-grandfather's  trip  to  Concord  on  that 
eventful  morning  was  not  the  first  that  he  had 
made  to  that  town.  He  had  been  over  that  fa- 
miliar route  to  Concord  in  quest  of  the  young 
lady  w^ho  became  his  bride  in  March,  1770."  She 
was  Bridget  Melvin,  daughter  of  Eleazer  and  Mary 
(Farrar)  Melvin,  and  had  connection  with  noted 
families  already  described  in  "  Beneath  Old  Roof 

»-T->  >  > 

1  rees. 

Note.  —  Eleazer  Melvin  and  his  brother  David  served  in  that 
fight  at  Pigwacket  in  1725,  and  were  both  in  the  expedition  to 
Louisburg,  and  in  later  campaigns  of  the  Colonial  wars. 


A  Melvin  powder-horn,  now  in  tlic  possession 
of  John  E.  L.  Hazen,  one  of  the  Longley  family 
connections,  is  a  memorial  of  the  Concord  patriots 
as  well  as  those  of  Shirley. 

Joshua  Longley  carried  on  the  farm,  besides 
acting  as  a  miller  and  builder,  until  his  death  in 
1 8 14.  A  stone  in  the  old  burying-ground  tells 
the  following  :  — 


Born  at  Groton,  Mass.,  July  23,  1751, 

Died  at  .Shirley,  Nov.  7,  1814. 


Born  at  Concord,  Mass.,  Dec.  9,  1751, 

Died  at  Shirley,  Feb.  27,  1.S17. 

The  ne.xt  generation  on  this  farm  was  Stephen, 
who  was  followed  by  his  son,  Stephen  Melvin,  who 
is  succeeded  by  Melvin  W.  Longley  ;  and  so  it  ap- 
pears that  the  grandsire's  union  with  the  Concord 
family  is  pleasantly  remembered  by  perpetuating 
the  name  of  the  bride  of  Joshua,  while  the  benefi- 
cent life  of  the  patriot  has  not  lost  its  effect  upon 
succeeding  generations. 

hi  the  southerly  part  of  Shirley,  not  far  from 
the  original  Longley-Hazen  mill  site,  and  on  a 
portion  of  the  territory  first  settled  by  Samuel 
Ilazen,  I  met  a  great-great-grandson  of  the  pio- 
neer of  Shirley,  Mr.  Thomas  L.  Hazen.  He  said, 
"  My  great-grandfather,  Samuel  Hazen,  Jr.,  was  at 
work  on  these  acres  when  the  alarm  of  the  19th 
of   April    reached  him.      He  immediately  left  his 


plough,  ran  to  the  house,  took  his  gun  and  powder- 
horn,^  and  said  to  his  wife  (Ehzabeth  Little), 
'  Betty,  you  take  care  of  the  children  and  the  cat- 
tle! I  must  go!'  The  family  then  consisted  of 
five  children,  the  eldest  not  ten  years,  and  the 
youngest  less  than  two  months.  He,  with  the 
others  from  this  town,  reached  Acton  about  eleven 
o'clock,  where  they  heard  of  the  fight  at  Concord 
and  of  the  retreat ;  but  they  concluded  to  march 
on,  and  pursued  the  enemy  to  Cambridge.  Sam- 
uel Hazen  remained  there  thirteen  days,  and  later 
joined  the  army,  and  was  made  captain  of  the 
Shirley  company. 

On  a  stone  at  his  grave  is  read  :  — 


Died  May  6,  1815, 
aged  74  years,  ii  months. 

One  of  the  old  dwellings  now  standing  in  Shir- 
ley is  that  known  as  the  Joseph  Hazen  House. 
It  is  a  well-kept  reminder  of  the  days  when  the 
children  and  grandchildren  of  Samuel  the  patriot 
were  taught  beneath  its  roof  the  lessons  of  pa- 
triotism. Near  by  was  the  old  Pound  Hill  school- 
house,  where  many  a  rustic  youth  was  taught  the 
rudiments  of  education  under  the  supervision  of 
Mr.  Joseph  Hazen,  "the  committee-man."  Said 
Mr.  Herman  S.  Hazen,  "  My  father  enjoyed  a  pe- 
culiar satisfaction  in  having  employed  for  a  win- 

^   Powder-liorn  now  in  possession  of  Thomas  L.  Hazen. 



ter  term  a  young  man  from  Lunenburg,  who  has 
since  acted  well  the  part  of  a  patriot."  George 
S.  Boutwell  taught  Pound  Hill  school  from  De- 
cember, 1834,  to  February,  1835.      He  passed  his 

Shirley  Schoolhouse.     '-A  ragged  beggar  simniiig  " 

seventeenth  birthday  while  teaching  in  Shirley. 
He  received  sixteen  dollars  a  month  and  board. 
But  four^  of  the  pupils  are  now  living  who  recall 

1  The  four  pupils  are  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Sullivan  Davis  of  Pepperell, 
Mrs.  Henry  Edgarton  of  Shirley,  and  Charles  Anderson  of  Minne- 
apolis, Minn. 



the  erect  figure  and  genial  countenance  of  the 
young  man  who  went  in  and  out  before  the  youth 
upwards  of  sixty  years  ago.  The  schoolhouse  still 
remains  "a  ragged  beggar  sunning." 

The  master's  desk  is  gone ;  but  there  may  be 
seen  — 

"The  warping  floor,  the  battered  seats, 
The  jack-knife's  carved  initial." 

A  Battkkhij  SkAr  from  Shirley  Schoolhouse 

"The  charcoal  frescoes  on  its  wall, 
Its  door's  worn  sill  betraying 
The  feet  that  creeping  slow  to  school 
Went  storming  out  to  playing !  " 

Among  the  minute-men  of  Shirley  was  James 
Dickerson,  who  heard  the  April  alarm  while  in  the 


field  engaged  in  planting  corn.  He  left  his  hoe, 
took  his  musket  and  powder-horn,  and  joined  the 
company.  His  wife  Priscilla^  took  up  the  hoe, 
finished  the  planting,  and  carried  on  the  labors  of 
the  farm  until  her  husband's  return. 

In  passing   through   the   southerly  part  of   the 
town,  I  met  Mr.  Elihu  Lon2:lev,  who  at  fourscore 

Old  Home,  Shirlh\ 

years  dwells  on  a  portion  of  the  original  grant. 
At  the  well,  dipping  "  the  moss-covered  bucket,"  I 
met  Mr.  Edward  A.  Jenkins,  who  is  the  fifth  gen- 
eration on  his  farm.     When  gathering  his  children 

1  This  Priscilla,  born  in  Shirley,  March  6,  1749,  and  wife  of 
James  Dickerson,  was  a  daughter  of  Francis  and  Susanna  Harris. 
Harris  was  one  of  the  foremost  men  of  the  town.  Eleven  times 
selectman,  also  town  clerk  and  treasurer.  He  was  the  delegate 
of  the  town  in  the  first  and  second  sessions  of  the  Provincial 


and  grandchildren  about  him,  he  boasts  of  seven 
generations  who  have  drunk  from  the  same  w^ell. 
Mr.  Jenkins  recalls  the  face  of  his  great-grand- 
father, Moses  Jennerson,  who  was  among  the  pa- 
triots of  1775. 

At  the  northerly  part  of  the  town  I  passed  the 
farm  where  lived  two  patriots,  Timothy  Bolton  and 
his  brother  William.  The  latter  was  a  drummer 
in  the  Shirley  company  when  it  left  the  town  on 
April   19,   1775. 

Near  the  Bolton  home  was  the  old  tavern  kept 
by  Obadiah  Sawtell.  Here  were  lively  times  when 
the  Shirley  company  gathered  to  discuss  the  ques- 
tions of  those  trying  days.  But  "  Flip  and  Toddy" 
never  gave  out  as  long  as  the  company  remained. 
Obadiah  Sawtell,  Jr.,  was  one  of  the  alarm  band, 
and  also  in  later  service,  to  the  credit  of  the  town. 
This  noted  landlord  was  the  town's  first  represen- 
tative to  the  General  Court  under  the  Constitu- 
tion, and  a  member  of  the  convention  that  adopted 
the  Constitution  of  the  United  States. 

In  passing  I  made  note  of  the  home  of  John 
Dwiffht,  who  was  wounded  at  the  battle  of  White 

In  the  easterly  part  of  the  town  lived  Jonas 
Longley,  the  third  son  of  John,  the  redeemed  cap- 
tive. Although  sixty-four  years  old  at  the  open- 
ing of  the  Revolution,  this  old  hero  and  his  son 
Jonas  shouldered  their  fowling-pieces,  and  marched 
to  Cambridge  on  April  19,   1775.     It  is  of  interest 


to  note  that  the  present  town  clerk  of  Shirley  is 
Jonas  Longley,  a  great-grandson  and  namesake  of 
the  old  veteran. 

In  passing  I  was  shown  the  homes  of  the  Page 
family,  from  which  went  Jonas  and  Simon  to  the 
war  ;  of  Samuel  Walker,  who  lived  almost  a  cen- 
tury, and  told  his  story  of  the  Resolution  to  four 
generations  ;  also  that  of  Deacon  Joseph  Brown, 
who  was  in  the  ranks. 

At  the  southerly  part  of  the  town  is  the  old  brick 
house  from  which  John  Edgerton  went  to  the  ser- 
vice of  his  country,  in  company  with  Ivory  Wilds, 
who  later  renounced  the  world,  and  became  a 
member  of  the  Society  of  Shakers. 

Among  the  treasured  relics  of  the  days  of  pecu- 
liar trial  is  a  package  of  the  Continental  currency, 
shown  by  members  of  the  Parker  family,  who  are 
thus  reminded  of  the  service  of  their  patriot  ances- 
tor. Captain  James  Parker. 

Continuing  the  journey,  I  came  to  the  old  fam- 
ily seat  of  the  Holdens,  who  have  been  numerous 
through  the  entire  history  of  the  town.  Seven  of 
the  name  were  in  the  Shirley  company  on  April 
19,  1775,  five  of  whom  enlisted  for  eight  months, 
and  were  in  service  on  the  17th  of  June.  There 
was  another  of  the  family,  John  Holden,  who  made 
record  during  the  war,  although  too  young  to  be 
registered  with  the  soldiers  at  the  beginning. 







Among  the  sixteen  children  of  Amos  Holden 
was  John,  born  on  May  21,  1765.  His  name  stands 
as  the  sixth  in  the  register  of  the  family  Bible.  Al- 
though but  a  babe  in  swaddling  clothes  when  the 
Stamp  Act  aroused  the  Colonists  to  a  realizing 
sense  of  the  cloud  of  war  gathering  about  them, 
the  boy  John  Holden  was  fully  aware  of  the  duty 
of  a  patriot  when  the  Lexington  alarm  summoned 
the  men  of  Shirley  to  arms.  Like  David  of  old,  the 
boy  John  Holden  had  been  trained  to  tend  sheep 
on  his  father's  farm,  and  while  in  that  quiet  and 
retired  service  there  had  developed  within  him  a 
talent  for  music.  The  fife  was  the  popular  musi- 
cal instrument  in  this  boy  John's  day,  as  was  the 
harp  in  the  days  of  David,  the  son  of  Jesse. 
When  John  Holden  learned  to  play  the  fife  no  one 
knew,  in  fact  he  could  scarcely  tell  himself,  unless 
it  was  on  training-days,  when  he  followed  the  mili- 
tia company  about  the  town  as  they  kept  step  to 


the  music  of  the  fife  and  drum  in  the  hands  of  his 
well-known  neighbors. 

Amos  Holden  found  it  difficult,  with  his  large 
family,  *' to  make  the  ends  meet;"  but  the  long- 
ing for  a  fife  which  had  grown  to  be  little  less  than 
a  passion  in  the  boy  John  must  be  gratified,  and 
the  indulgent  father  procured  one,  and  brought  it 
home  for  a  birthday  present  to  the  lad.  The  boy 
could  hardly  believe  his  own  eyes,  but  lost  no  time 
in  perfecting  himself  in  its  use.  It  was  at  the 
time  when  the  whole  country  was  in  a  state  of 
ferment  and  dread.  War  seemed  inevitable,  and 
the  oppressive  rule  of  the  English  was  the  theme 
of  conversation  everywhere. 

Young  John  heard  much  of  it,  and  longed  to  be 
a  man  that  he  might  join  the  Shirley  company  of 
minute-men  now  holding  semiweekly  drills.  One 
day  he  received  a  compliment  which  gave  rise  to 
aspirations  not  dreamed  of  by  his  parents. 

A  Boston  gentleman  paid  a  visit  to  the  Holdens 
at  the  old  farmhouse,  when  the  chief  topic  of  con- 
versation was  the  prospect  of  war  with  the  mother 
country.  While  the  guest  was  present,  Amos 
Holden  asked  his  son  to  play  a  tune  on  his  fife. 
The  boy  struck  up  with  a  stirring  march,  which 
elicited  the  exclamation  of  surprise,  "  The  boy  has 
the  soul  of  music  in  him  ;  he  will  be  ready  to 
meet  King  George's  army." 

John  sat  still  for  a  while  in  a  meditative  man- 
ner; but  before  retiring  for  the  night  went  shyly 


Up  to  his  father,  and  said,  "  If  the  British  do 
come,  shall  I  go  to  the  war  with  my  fife  ? "  —  *'  Why, 
yes,"  replied  the  father  laughingly ;  *'  they  could 
not  get  along  without  you." 

These  words,  spoken  by  the  father  without  a 
second  thought,  as  are  too  many  from  parental 
lips,  sank  deep  into  the  heart  of  the  boy  John. 
He  revolved  them  over  and  over  in  his  mind,  as 
he  applied  himself  to  the  use  of  his  fife.  When 
he  was  far  away  in  the  fields  tending  his  father's 
flocks  and  herds,  the  stirring  notes  of  the  fife 
could  be  heard  by  the  neighboring  farmers,  who 
predicted  that  the  time  was  not  far  away  when 
John  Holden  would  be  the  fifer  of  the  Shirley 

At  length,  on  a  delightful  April  morning  of 
1775,  an  alarm  was  sounded  over  the  hills  of 
Shirley,  "The  Regulars  are  coming."  It  was  not 
long  before  the  men  were  on  the  march  towards 
Concord.  Amos  Holden  was  among  them.  The 
boy  John,  with  fife  in  hand,  begged  to  go  too,  but 
was  dissuaded  from  what  he  had  believed  to  be  his 
father's  promise  with  the  excuse,  "  You  are  too 
young  ;  wait  a  while,  and  if  they  don't  get  enough 
of  it  to-day,  when  we  meet  them,  you  may  have 
a  chance  later."  The  time  soon  came  when  youth 
was  no  barrier,  if  the  requisite  stature  had  been  at- 
tained ;  and  three  of  the  sons  of  Amos  Holden  en- 
tered the  army.  John  was  one  of  them.  Instead 
of  a  musket,  this  boy  soldier  carried  his  fife,  and 


did  a  patriot's  duty  on  the  march,  in  the  camp,  and 
on  the  field.  At  times,  when  everything  seemed  , 
dark  and  doubtful  about  the  company,  the  notes 
of  John  Holden's  fife  could  be  heard  above  the  din 
of  battle,  and  many  a  weary  and  homesick  soldier 
took  on  new  courage,  and  went  forth  to  victory. 
For  twenty  long  months  the  boy  fifer  was  away 
in  the  service  ;  at  first  with  Colonel  Prescott,  and 
later  with  Washington  at  New  York,  under  the 
immediate  command  of  General  Knox.  This  lad, 
with  a  beardless  face,  dressed  in  a  soldier's  suit 
gay  with  brass  buttons,  was  a  favorite  with  the 
regiment.  Said  one  of  the  officers,  "  This  boy  is 
a  captain-general  of  us  all.  I  have  never  known 
him  to  whimper  or  say  '  I  can't,'  although  he  is 
the  youngest  of  us." 

At  the  conclusion  of  his  service  in  the  war, 
John  Holden  returned  to  Shirley,  and  in  1791 
married  Sally  Sanderson  of  Lunenburg,  and  re- 
moved to  Franklin,  Vermont,  where  he  was  living 
in  1833,  when  he  received  a  pension  from  the 
United  States  Government,  which  was  continued 
to  him  until  his  death  in  1847.  He  was  classed 
as  a  private  and  musician,  in  the  pension  depart- 
ment. In  the  archives  of  the  State  of  Massachu- 
setts, he  is  recorded  as  fifer. 


Another  of  the  Holden  family  of  Shirley,  born 
four  months  after  John,  was  Oliver,  son  of  Nehe- 


miab.  He  was  cousin  to  John  the  fifer,  and  like 
him  endowed  with  rare  musical  talent.  These 
boys  were  happy  in  each  other's  society  in  their 
humble  homes,  romping  over  the  hills  of  Shirley, 
and  trudging  off  to  the  little  schoolhouse  under 
the  hill.  But  soon  after  the  Revolution,  Nehe- 
miah  Holden  and  his  family  removed  to  Charles- 
town,  where  there  was  a  demand  for  mechanics  in 
the  work  of  rebuilding  the  town  destroyed  by  the 
minions  of  George  III.  Oliver  labored  as  a  house- 
wrig-ht  with  his  father  for  a  while,  and  then,  fol- 
lovvino;  his  natural  inclination,  gave  his  attention 
to  mercantile  life.  This  afforded  him  a  bet- 
ter opportunity  for  indulging  his  musical  talent. 
While  conducting  trade,  he  composed  tunes, 
taught  singing-school,  and  published  several  vol- 
umes of  choice  hymns  and  tunes.  Among  his 
occasional  odes  was  one  for  the  reception  tendered 
General  George  Washington  when  upon  his  third 
and  last  visit  to  Boston,  in  October,  1789.  Oliver 
Holden  trained  a  choir  of  young  men  for  the  oc- 
casion ;  and  when  Washington  passed  under  the 
triumphal  arch  at  the  Old  State  House,  the  choir 
sang  to  this  ode  the  words,  "George  Washington, 
the  hero,  is  come." 

But  that  which  has  immortalized  this  son  and 
patriot  of  Shirley  is  the  tune  "Coronation."  This 
was  composed  in  1793,  soon  became  a  favorite  in 
the  churches,  and  now,  after  more  than  a  cen- 
tury, retains  a  prominent  place  in  church   psalm- 


ody.  During  the  Civil  War  it  became  a  battle 
hymn,  and  many  a  weary  soldier  on  the  march 
has  quickened  his  pace  by  the  inspiration  of  grand 
old  "  Coronation." 

The  words  have  been  traced  to  Rev,  Edward 
Perronet,  son  of  Vincent  Perronet,  vicar  of  Shore- 
ham,  England.  They  we-re  first  sung  to  the  tune 
of  ''Miles  Lane;"  but  the  production  of  Oliver 
Holden  was  better  adapted  to  them,  as  millions 
cheerfully  testify  to-day. 

On  Old  Burial  Hill,  Charlestown,  where  are  yet 
to  be  seen  scars  made^  by  the  bullets  of  Gage's 
army,  is  the  burial-place  of  this  noted  man.      On  a 

1   From  a  tal)Ic  monument  near  the  John  Harvard  obehsk:  — 



Who  SERVED  his  Country  as  Treasurer 

More  than  a  Treble  Prentiship  & 

AS  a  Magistrate  Sixteen  Years, 

Who  DEPARTED  this  Life 

the  14TH  of  May  1676. 

Bein(;  the  Sixty-fifth   Year  of  his  Age. 

A  Saint,  a  Hushami,  a  faithful  Brother 

A  friend  far  excelled  by  any  other 

A  saint  that  walked  high  in  cither  -way 

Of  Godliness  and  Honesty  oil  say. 

A  husband  rare  to  both  his  darling  xvives 

A  father  politic,  faithful  and  kind. 

"  X.  B.  The  ravages  of  time,  and  an  accident  during  the  siege  of  Bos- 
ton in  1775,  having  destroyed  tlie  monument  erected  at  the  decease  of 
Mr.  Russell,  this  being  a  true  copy  of  the  original  was  replaced  by  his 
Relatives,  a.d.  1787,  in  testimony  of  their  regard  to  his  memory." 


bronze  tablet  placed  in  the  brick  wall  of  the  family 
tomb  may  be  read  :  — 



CoMrosER  OK  THE  TV'NE  "  Coronation." 

Born  in  Shirley,  Sept.  iS,  1765, 

Died  in  Charlestown,  Sept.  4,  1844. 

To  his  dear  memory,  this  tablet  is  placed  by  his  Granddaughter. i 

All  hail  the  power  of  Jesus'  7iavie, 

Let  aftgels  p7-ostrate  fall. 
Brmg  forth  the  royal  diadem. 

And  crown  liim  Lord  of  all. 

It  was  when  the  storm-clouds  of  the  Revolution 
were  gathering  that  the  people  of  Shirley  went 
to  work  to  build  a  meeting-house  in  place  of  the 
rude  structure  that  had  served  them  for  a  score  of 
years  as  the  only  place  for  public  convocation, 
religious,  municipal,  and  military.  On  Thanks- 
giving Day  of  1773  the  voice  of  prayer  was  first 
heard  in  that  house.  It  was  the  only  occasion  of 
the  kind  when  "God  save  the  King"  from  the 
pastor's  lips  met  with  an  ''Amen"  from  the  peo- 
ple. Before  the  next  autumnal  festival  the  port 
of  Boston  had  been  blockaded,  and  Shirley  farmers 
had  shared  their  crops  with  their  distressed  breth- 
ren in  Boston.  It  was  a  custom  of  these  towns 
to  use  the  upper  gallerv  of  the  meeting-house  as  a 
magazine  for  military  stores.  The  building  usu- 
ally stood  on  or  near  the  training  field,  was  away 

^  Mrs.  Fanny  A.  Tyler. 



LoNGLKY  Ball, 


Bunker  Hill 

\..  . 

Shirley  Relics 

OK    THE 



from  other  houses,  and  was  entirely  free  from  any 
means  of  heating,  consequently  was  regarded  as 
the  safest  place  for  powder.  A  portion  of  the 
upper  gallery  in  the  Shirley  meeting-house  was 
early  set  apart  for  this  purpose.  While  the  min- 
ister was  urging  resistance  to  British  oppression, 
there  was  in  the  loft  above  the  high  pulpit  the  ma- 
terial to  give  emphasis  to  his  instruction.  In  the 
hasty  distribution  of  the  cartridges  to  the  minute- 
men,  some  dropped  and  rolled  out  of  sight,  and 
after  a  full  century  were  found,  and  brought  forth 
to  the  light,  and  are  now  treasured  by  my  guide 
as  reminders  of  those  days  of  peculiar  trial. 

The  patriotic  people  of  Shirley  have  for  genera- 
tions derived  a  peculiar  satisfaction  from  the  gift 
of  the  pulpit  Bible  by  Madam  Lydia  Hancock  of 
Boston.  This  benevolent  woman  was  the  widow 
of  the  merchant,  Thomas  Hancock,  and  with  his 
nephew  John  was  enjoying  the  luxuries  of  the 
famous  Hancock  estate  in  Boston  at  the  time  of 
this  gift.  The  occasion  was  the  opening  of  the 
new  meeting-house  ;  and  Madam  Lydia  testified  by 
this  gift  to  the  town  her  regard  for  her  niece 
and  namesake,  Lydia  Bowes  of  Bedford,  who  had 
but  recently  become  the  wife  of  the  minister  of 
Shirley,  Rev.  Pheneas  Whitney.  It  will  occur  to 
the  reader  that  a  sister  of  Mrs.  Whitney,  Lucy 
Bowes,  was  the  wife  of  Rev.  Jonas  Clark  of  Lex- 
ington, and  that  they  were  daughters  of  Rev. 
Nicholas  Bowes  of  Bedford,  and  Lucy,  daughter 


of  Rev.  John  Hancock  of  Lexington.  Hence  they 
were  cousins  of  John  Hancock,  the  famous  patriot. 
This  family  connection  must  have  stimulated  the 
patriotism  in  the  town  of  Shirley. 


During  the  summer  of  1775,  when  the  Pro- 
vincial troops  were  in  an  unsettled  condition,  and 
the  siege  was  progressing,  the  Provincial  Con- 
gress made  a  demand  for  thirteen  thousand  coats 
for  the  use  of  the  patriot  army,  to  be  ready  before 
the  cold  weather.  There  were  no  shrewd  millers  to 
take  the  contract,  and  turn  the  public  emergency 
to  their  personal  advantage  ;  but  at  each  hearth- 
stone there  were  set  up  a  mill  and  a  tailor's  shop. 

The  committee  of  supplies  was  directed  to  ap- 
portion the  coats  on  the  towns  by  a  schedule, 
made  in  accordance  with  the  last  Provincial  tax. 
This  burden  largely  fell  to  the  women,  and  follow- 
ing what  they  had  sacrificed,  was  trying  indeed; 
but  with  their  characteristic  zeal,  they  went  to 
work  to  get  the  coats  ready  before  the  first  day  of 
October.  The  selectmen  of  each  town  were  re- 
quired to  cause  a  certificate  to  be  sewed  to  the 
inside  of  each* coat,  telling  from  what  town  it 
came,  by  whom  the  coat  was  made,  and,  if  the  cloth 
was  manufactured  in  this  country,  by  whom  it  was 
manufactured.  Here  was  an  opportunity  for  prov- 
ing personal  ability,  and  the  spirit  of  competition 
was  rife  throuohout  the  Province. 


Rolls    of  wool   laid    aside   for   family  use  were 

brought  out, 
carded,  spun, 
and  woven  un- 
der the  same 
roof ;  and  while 
thegreat  wheel 
was  humming 
in  one  room, 
there  was  the 
continual  prep- 
aration of  food 
for  the  absent 
soldier  boys. 
The  coats  were 
to  be  of  *'good, 
plain  cloth, 
preference  to 
be  given  to 
that  of  home 
Having  signed  the  protest  against  the  use  of  for- 
eign manufactures,  there  was  the  greater  struggle 
with  each  town  to  meet  its  demands  from  its  own 
looms.  The  coats  were  to  be  ''made  in  the  com- 
mon plain  way,  without  lapels,  short,  and  with 
small  folds,  and  faced  with  the  same  kind  of  cloth 
of  which  they  were  made."  They  were  to  be 
"  buttoned  with  pewter  buttons,  those  of  each 
regiment  respectively  to   have   buttons   with    the 

LoNcLEY  Well. 


same  number  stamped  upon  the  face  of  them." 
This  course  was  to  put  into  use  a  uniform,  in 
place  of  the  variety  of  garments  in  which  the 
hastily  improvised  army  were  clothed. 

The  committee  of  supplies  in  each  town  let  out 
the  contract  to  the  different  families,  and  in  many 
a  town's  record  book  may  be  read  the  account  of 
paying  the  different  parties  interested.  The  fact 
that  these  supplies  were  possibly  for  some  of  their 
own  people  may  have  urged  the  manufacturers 
to  greater  faithfulness,  but  we  have  no  reason  to 
think  that  any  one  would  have  slighted  any  part 
of  this  duty.  The  different  towns  reported  what 
might  be  expected  of  them,  and  some  of  their  re- 
ports may  be  seen  to-day.  Among  them  is  that 
of  the  town  of  Shirley,  which  reads  :  — 

To  the  Gen^men,  Committee  of  suplies  appoynted  by  Con- 
gress, &c.    To  see  to  the  Providing  Clothing  for  the  army. 
Geii^inen,  —  These  are  to  Inform  you  that  the  Dis^  of  Shir- 
ley have  agreed  to  provide  the  Parte  of  Coats,  Shirts,  Stock- 
ins,  and  Britches  to  them  Assigned,  and  thirty  Pare  of  Shoes 
for  the  Benefitt  of  the  Continentle  army,  &c. 
By  order  of  the  Selectmen. 

Obadiah  Sawtell.     Dis^.  Clerk. 
Shirley,  Atignst  ye  loth,  A.D.  1775. 

Each  man  volunteering  to  serve  for  a  term  of 
eight  months  was  promised  a  coat,  and  it  was  re- 
garded as  quite  a  possession  ;  so  much  so  that 
representatives  of  those  who  were  killed  at  Bun- 
ker Hill,  or  who  died  before  receiving  the  coat, 



were  granted  a  certain  sum  of  money  in  lieu  of 
the  coat,  etc. 

The  names  of  those  enlisted  for  eight  months, 
with  the  promise  of  the  coat,  are  found  on  what  is 
known  as  the  "  Coat  Roll ;"  while  those  who  turned 
out  on  April  19  are  recorded  on  what  is  known  as 
"The  Lexington  Alarm  List." 



STEADS. —  EVIL     WORK     OF    A    TORY     WOMAN,  


"  The  kindly  spot,  the  friendly  town,  where  every  one  is  known, 
And  not  a  face  in  all  the  place  but  partly  seems  my  own." 

HoLLis,  after  making  a  record  for  abo,ut  seven 
years  as  the  west  parish  of  Dunstable,  became  a 
fully  equipped  town.  It  was  chartered  in  April, 
1746,  when  Benning- Went  worth  was  the  governor 
of  New  Hampshire, 

In  tracing  the  footprints  of  the  patriots  of  Hol- 
lis,  I  was  early  impressed  with  the  fact  that  I  was 
considering  the  acts  of  descendants  of  the  settlers 
of  towns  near  Boston,  and  that  the  people  of 
Hollis  were  bound  by  ties  of  blood  and  kinship 
with  those  of  Concord,  Littleton,  Bedford,  Marl- 
borough, Billerica,  Reading,  Salem,  Woburn,  and 
other  towns  of  lower  Middlesex  and  Essex  Coun- 
ties from  which  they  or  their  parents  had  mi- 

Having  so  many  common  interests  of  long  stand- 
ing, it   was  natural  enough  for  their  military  af- 



fairs  to  be  somewhat  united.  This  was  particu- 
larly the  case  with  the  towns  which  formed  the 
northern  boundary  of  Middlesex  County  and  their 
neighbors  in  the  adjoining  towns  on  the  southern 
border  of  New  Hampshire.  The  popularity  of 
Colonel  William   Prescott  was  recognized  in  the 

John  Colbukn 

towns  of  both  colonies;  family  ties  also  inclined 
the  soldiers  of  Hollis,  N.H.,  to  cast  in  their  lot 
with  the  trusted  Colonel's  regiment. 

It  mattered  little  whether  in  this  or  that  town, 
in  one  Province  or  the  other,  the  same  motives  ac- 
tuated the  one  people;  and  I  invite  my  readers  to 
turn  with  me  to  the  hearth-stones  of  Hollis,  where 


Still  glows  the  fire  of  patriotism  kindled  by  the 
pioneers  of  that  locality.  Age  entitles  Mr.  John 
Colburn  to  the  first  hearing. 

Although  in  his  ninety-seventh  year,  Mr.  Col- 
burn has  other  qualifications  for  speaking  of  the 
patriots  of  Hollis.  He  was  born  there,  and  his 
parents  were  also  natives  of  the  town.  Said  the 
veteran,  when  met  in  his  home,  seated  by  his 
wife,  who  was  also  a  nonagenarian,  "  We  have 
both  spent  the  greater  part  of  our  long  lives  near 
the  place  of  our  birth,  and  these  beautiful  hills 
and  valleys  are  a  delight  to  us."  On  his  maternal 
side  this  veteran  is  descended  from  Eleazer  Flao:fr, 
one  of  the  earliest  permanent  settlers  of  that 
territory.  Anticipating  my  call  on  his  ninety- 
seventh  birthday,  Mr.  Colburn  prepared  a  care- 
fully written  statement  for  me.  Rising  from  his 
chair,  and  buttoning  his  Prince  Albert  coat  about 
his  stately  figure,  he  passed  into  an  adjoining 
room,  and  returned  with  his  notes,  saying,  — 

"■  I  have  always  avoided  the  pronoun  '  I,'  never 
seeking  nor  desirmg  publicity  ;  but  since  you  de- 
sire it,  I  presume  I  cannot  more  profitably  spend 
these  hours  than  in  aidins:  you  in  tracing^  out  the 
footprints  of  the  patriots,  and  in  doing  it  I  must 
sometimes  speak  of  myself. 

'*  I  suppose  to  you  who  are  young  the  story  of 
the  opening  Revolution  seems  like  ancient  history  ; 
but  to  me  Concord,  Lexington,  and  Bunker  Hill 
are  as  much  a  reality  as  are  Gettysburg  or  Bull 


Run  and  other  battlefields  of  the  Civil  War, 
in  which  my  son  participated,  and  has  often  de- 

**  While  driving  the  oxen  to  plough  the  fields 
yonder,  father  used  to  tell  me  of  his  and  his 
neighbors'  experience  in  camp  and  battle  ;  and 
especially  on  or  near  the  19th  of  April,  would 
rehearse  the  whole  story,  becoming  so  interested 
at  times  that  he  would  stop  the  team  in  order  to 
better  illustrate  positions.  He  and  mother  would 
devote  whole  winter  evenings  to  talks  about  those 
days.  It  was  a  delight  to  us  children  —  for  I  was 
one  of  thirteen  for  whom  my  parents  toiled  and 
sacrificed.  Mother,  who  was  a  Hardy  (Lemuel's 
daughter),  could  help  along  the  stories  ;  for  her 
folks  were  in  it  as  well  as  the  Colburns.  With  a 
good  blazing  fire  on  the  hearth,  and  a  plenty  of 
four-foot  wood  at  hand  to  replenish  it,  a  dish  of 
good  apples,  some  butternuts,  and  a  mug  of  cider, 
what  cared  we  for  the  driving  snow  .^  We  drew 
up  to  the  fire  in  a  group,  some  on  the  settle  and 
some  in  the  chimney-corner.  To  be  sure,  there 
would  occasionally  come  a  contrary  blast  down 
the  chimney,  and  fill  our  eyes  with  smoke  and 
ashes  ;  but  it  was  soon  over,  and  we  children  were 
calling  for  more  story.  To  make  it  more  vivid, 
father  would  pause  at  times,  and  say,  'Now  ima- 
gine that  north-east  blast  against  the  window  to  be 
a  volley  of  bullets  from  the  redcoats  ;  '  at  which 
we  would  hide  the  closer  behind  the  hijih  back  of 


the  settle,  or  snuggle  more  securely  in  the  arms 
that  were  ever  ready  for  some  of  us.  My  father 
was  too  young  to  have  any  part  in  the  town  meet- 
ings just  before  the  war;  but  he  knew  what  was 
going  on,  and  was  anxious  to  be  in  the  company 
when  they  were  drilling  for  an  emergency. 

"  On  November  7th  the  people  took  action  at 
the  polls,  and  chose  three  of  their  leading  men 
to  represent  them  in  the  County  Congress  on  the 
following  day  at  Amherst.  They  made  record  as 
follows  :  '  We,  the  inhabitants  of  the  town  of 
Hollis,  having  taken  into  our  most  serious  consid- 
eration the  precarious  and  most  alarming  affairs  of 
our  land  at  the  present  day,  do  firmly  enter  into 
the  followins;  resolutions  :  — 

*"  That  we  will  at  all  times  endeavor  to  maintain 
our  liberty  and  privileges,  both  civil  and  sacred, 
even  at  the  risque  of  our  lives  and  fortunes,  and 
will  not  only  disapprove,  but  wholly  despise  all 
such  persons  as  we  have  just  and  solid  reason  to 
think  even  wish  us  in  any  measure  to  be  deprived 
of  them.'  Deacon  Stephen  Jewett,  Ensign  Stephen 
Ames,  and  Lieutenant  Reuben  Dow,  equipped  with 
such  authority,  were  sent  to  Amherst. 

*'  In  the  very  last  of  December  they  chose  a  dele- 
gate to  meet  in  a  Province  convention  to  consider 
a  Continental  Congress.  It  was  John  Hale,  Esq., 
who  had  this  honor. 

''They  also  voted  'that  we  do  cordially  accede 
to  the  just  statement  of  the  rights  and  grievances 


of  the  British  Colonies,  and  the  measures  adopted 
and  recommended  by  the  Continental  Cong;ress 
for  the  restoration  and  establishment  of  the  former, 
and  for  the  redress  of  the  latter.'  Three  deacons 
with  others  were  constituted  a  committee  to  ob- 
serve the  conduct  of  all  persons  touching  the  asso- 
ciation  agreement. 

The  town  of  Hollis  has  in  its  archives  three  ori- 
ginal rolls  of  military  companies.  Two  of  them 
were  made  out  in  January,  1775,  and  the  third  on 
June  7.  The  rolls  were  named  respectively,  "  A 
List  of  the  Company  of  Militia  in  Holies  under 
the  command  of  Capt.  Joshua  Wright,"  ''  Alarm 
List,"  and  *'The  List  of  the  present  Militia  Com- 
pany of  Holies,  Exclusive  of  the  Minute-men  and 
all  that  have  gone  into  the  army,  June  ye  7th, 
1775."  These  companies  appear  to  have  con- 
tained all  the  able-bodied  men  of  the  town.  They 
held  frequent  meetings,  and  in  every  way  kept 
pace  with  their  neighbors  across  the  line  in 
Massachusetts.  On  April  3  they  chose  Deacon 
Stephen  Jewett  and  Deacon  Enoch  Noyes  as  del- 
egates to  the  County  Congress,  and  "to  see  what 
method  should  be  taken  to  raise  money  for  the 
Continental  Congress  at  Philadelphia."  "  Thus 
■far  it  had  been  only  drilling  and  voting  ;  but  soon 
there  came  something  more  exciting,"  said  Mr. 
Colburn's  father,  "and  Governor  Wentworth,  down 
at  Portsmouth,  found  that  we  were  in  earnest.  The 
alarm  did  not  reach  us  on  April  19th  until  it  was 


too  late  to  be  of  any  service  on  that  clay,  but 
our  ninety-two  minute-men  made  a  record  later 
that  compares  favorably  with  the  Massachusetts 

Mr.  John  Colburn's  repetition  of  his  father's 
fireside  story  was  concluded  by  his  description  of 
Bunker  Hill,  where  in  his  youth  he  visited  the 
earthworks  thrown  up  on  that  June  night  of  1775. 
Said  he,  "  They  had  not  begun  to  talk  of  a  monu- 
ment, and  everything  was  in  a  very  rough  condi- 
tion. I  walked  over  that  redoubt,  and  identified 
the  locations  just  as  my  father  had  described  them 
to  me,  where  he,  with  so  many  Hollis  men,  faced 
the  enemy  in  the  heat  of  the  battle,  where  a  num- 
ber of  them  gave  up  their  lives." 

Seated  by  the  side  of  Mr.  Colburn  during  his 
birthday  recital  was  his  faithful  wife,  who  was 
ninety-one  years  of  age,  and  a  life-long  resident 
of  the  town.  She  was  Naomi  Boynton,  grand- 
daughter of  Deacon  John  Boynton  and  Ruth 
Jewett.  This  interesting  woman  was  not  only  an 
intelligent  listener,  but  a  most  helpful  prompter, 
and  in  her  turn  modestly  said,  **  It  was  my  grand- 
father. Deacon  John  Boynton,  who  first  received 
the  April  morning  message,  and  spread  it  through 
the  town."  These  words  of  Mrs.  Colburn,  mod- 
estly dropped,  resulted  in  my  retracing  the  steps 
of  the  messenger  of  1775,  in  company  with  Mr. 
Cyrus  F.  Burge,  and  in  gathering  the  facts  as  we 
made   our  way.      Beginning   at   Runnell's   bridge, 


we  first  came  to  the  land  where  were  recalled  the 
homes  of  Ebenezer  and  Thomas  Jaquith,  who  re- 
sponded to  the  urgent  call  of  General  Sullivan  on 
November  30,  1775.  It  was  through  the  special 
efforts  of  Colonel  Samuel  Hobart,  paymaster  of 
the  New  Hampshire  troops,  that  the  large  num- 
ber rallied  in  Hillsborough  County,  and  responded 
at  Cambridge.  Colonel  Hobart  had  been  in  the 
king's  legislature,  was  also  recorder  and  treasurer 
of  his  county  at  this  time,  and  was  a  manufacturer 
of  gunpowder  in  the  Province  of  New  Hampshire. 

We  next  came  to  the  home  of  William  J.  Rock- 
wood,  grandson  of  Dr.  Ebenezer  Rockwood,  who 
served  in  Thatcher's  regiment.  The  one  thing  in 
his  possession  to-day  reminding  of  his  grandsire's 
patriotic  service  is  his  commission  as  surgeon 
from  the  Massachusetts  Bay  Colony.  In  passing 
remarked  my  guide,  "  Near  these  trees  lived 
Isaac  Stearns,  who  served  the  town  in  the  French 
war,  and  was  one  of  the  minute-men  of  Hollis  to 
respond  to  Deacon  Boynton's  alarm.  He  also 
served  in  the  Continental  Army,  and  after  the  war 
migrated  to  Plymouth,  N.H." 

Forty  rods  away  lived  Ebenezer  Cummings,  son 
of  Deacon  William.  He  went  into  the  war,  and 
died  of  the  smallpox  in  1778. 

This  dreaded  scourge  brought  sorrow  to  the 
town  through  the  instrumentality  of  a  woman  who 
was  a  Tory  of  the  most  bitter  nature.  It  is  alleged 
that  she  spread  infected  clothing  through  the  fam- 


ilies,  and  thus  caused  the  death  of  ten  of  the  in- 
nocent citizens.  Among  the  victims  were  Daniel 
Mooar  and  daughter,  Edward  Johnson  and  infant 

Halting  at  the  home  of  Andrew  Jewett,  we 
were  saluted  by  a  grandson  of  Ebenezer  Jewett, 
who  was  in  service  at  Bunker  Hill.  Said  An- 
drew, '*  My  grandfather's  gun  gave  out  before  the 
powder  failed,  and  he  did  the  best  he  could  by 
hurling  stones  at  the  British  soldiers.  He  fre- 
quently entertained  the  young  people  in  times  of 
peace  by  describing  his  rough  and  tumble  expe- 
rience at  Bunker  Hill.  Grandfather  brought  home 
from  the  war  a  negro  man,  Pompey,  who  lived  in 
the  family  many  years  on  this  farm,  which  was  in 
part  my  grandfather's.' 

In  passing  through  a  part  of  the  town,  we  noted 
the  hill  on  which  the  alarm-gun  was  fired  in  order 
to  arouse  other  families,  who  lived  farther  away. 
Three  important  minute-men.  Lieutenant  John 
Goss,  Captain  Reuben  Dow,^  and  Deacon  Boyn- 
ton,  lived  near  the  State  line  in  this  locality.  We 
drew  rein  at  the  Boynton  home,  and  there  heard 
from  the  lips  of  the  present  occupant  facts  of  in- 

1  Captain  Dow  was  with  his  sons,  ploughing  in  the  field,  when 
the  alarm  reached  them.  The  father,  with  two  sons,  Evan  and 
Stephen,  made  haste  to  the  Centre,  or  place  of  rendezvous,  while 
Daniel,  but  six  years  of  age,  was  left  to  care  for  the  oxen,  with 
the  aid  of  his  mother  and  sisters. 


In  the  hasty  preparations  for  marching,  the 
families  contributed  such  food  as  they  had.  The 
salt-pork  barrel,  partially  full,  was  brought  out  of 
the  cellar ;  and  the  strips  of  pork  were  divided 
between  the  minute-men  who  assembled  here  at 
the  home  of  their  captain.  This  Dow  farm  is 
one  of  the  many  of  Hollis  that  has  been  retained 
in  the  family  of  the  patriot  who  went  from  the 
same  door  on  that  eventful  morning.  The  line  of 
descent  has  been :  Reuben,  Stephen,  Jeremiah 
Dow  ;  the  latter's  daughter,  who  married  John  C. 
Bell ;  succeeded  by  Charles  Dow  Bell,  whose  son, 
Charles  J.  Bell,  is  now  the  thrifty  farmer,  and 
is  surrounded  by  an  interesting  family.  Thus 
seven  generations  have  enjoyed  these  scenes  ;  the 
last  not  failing  to  be  duly  impressed  with  the  part 
taken  by  the  first.  Captain  Reuben  Dow,  in  the 
struggle  for  liberty. 

Standing  on  the  well-worn  door-stone,  I  saw 
in  the  distance  the  Colburn  home,  where  I  took 
my  first  lesson  in  New  Hampshire  patriotism. 
Nearer  by  we  halted  at  the  well  from  which  the 
Goss  family  drew  their  supply.  To  the  west  from 
Captain  Dow's  home  lived  Amos  Eastman,  and 
we  made  haste  to  that  old  family  site.  Here 
Amos  Eastman  was  well  established  when  he 
went  as  the  captain  of  a  company  under  General 
John  Stark  into  the  French  war.  He  and  his 
son  Amos  manufactured  guns  at  this  place  for 
the  patriots  ;  and  a  gun  of  their  make  was  used  as 

A'£IV  //A A/PS/// A' £    GUN-MAKERS  III 

the  alarm-gun  at  Hollis  Common  later  in  the  war, 
an  alarm  being  three  guns  fired  in  rapid  succes- 

Indisputable  evidence  of  this  branch  of  industry 
is  found  in  State  papers. 

Wednesday,  January  24th,  1776. 
Voted,  that  the  balance  of  the  account  of  Amos  Eastman 
for  guns,  amounting  to  thirty-two  pounds,  sixteen  shillings, 
be  allowed  and  paid  out  of  the  Treasury,  and  that  the  Presi- 
dent of  the  Council  give  orders  on  the  Treasury  for  payment 
thereof.  Sent  up  by  Mr.  Clough.  —  N.  H.  State  Papers, 
vol.  viii.,  p.  56. 

Note.  —  In  the  year  1752  Amos  Eastman,  Senior,  then  living 
at  Penacook,  being  on  a  hunting  expedition  in  the  northerly  part 
of  New  Hampshire  with  General  John  Stark  and  others,  was,  with 
Stark,  taken  prisoner  by  the  Indians,  and  both  of  them  taken  to  an 
Indian  village  in  Canada.  On  their  arrival  at  the  village,  both  the 
captives  were  compelled  to  run  the  gantlet  between  two  files  of 
savages,  each  armed  with  a  switch  or  club  with  which  to  strike 
them  as  they  passed  between  the  lines.  Stark,  as  is  said,  escaped 
with  but  slight  injury;  but  Eastman  was  cruelly  beaten,  and  was 
afterwards  sold  to  a  French  master,  kindly  treated  by  him,  and 
soon  after  redeemed,  and  went  home. 

The  Eastman  family  possession  has  been  in  the 
male  line  from  Amos  to  son  Amos,  then  Alpheus 
to  son  Oliver  Perry  Eastman,  who  now  tills  the 
paternal  acres.  He  is  aided  by  another  genera- 
tion, who  cherishes  the  family  record  at  this  old 

Continuing  on  our  route  towards  the  centre  of 


Hollis,  we  came  to  the  Worcester  home.  No 
school-child  who  has  turned  from  his  task  to  Wor- 
cester's Dictionary  for  help  can  fail  of  having  an 
interest  in  the  estate,  from  which  went  out  gen- 
erations of  noble  men  and  women  to  bless  the 
world,  prominent  among  whom  was  the  lexicog- 







BATTLE  OF  JUNE  1 7,  17/5,  CALL  FROM  GEN- 

The  Worcester  home  is  a  little  south  of  the 
centre  of  Hollis,  and  has  been  in  the  family  pos- 
session since  the  year  1750. 

The  pioneer  of  the  family  in  this  country  was 
Rev.  William  Worcester,  who  came  from  Salis- 
bury, England,  and  became  the  minister  at  Mer- 
rimack, later  called  Colchester,  and  permanently 
named  Salisbury.  Although  in  a  rude  log  meet- 
ing-house, the  settlers  were  in  favor  of  order,  and 
voted,  "■  Every  freeman  when  speaking  in  meeting 
shall  take  off  his  hat,  and  rise  when  speaking, 
and  put  it  on  when  done."  The  pioneer  died  at 
Salisbury  in  1662.  We  next  find  the  family  at 
Sandwich,  Mass.,  where  Rev.  Francis  Worcester, 
great-grandson    of    the   Rev.    William,  was    born. 


He  married  Abigail  Carleton,  and  there  kept  the 
family  record  good  until  1750,  when  he  moved 
with  his  large  family  to  Hollis,  and  so  became  the 
founder  of  the  noted  family  in  that  town. 

The  house  to  which  Rev.  Francis  Worcester 
took  his  family  was  small,  but  through  various 
additions  has  become  a  very  large  dwelling,  yet 
none  too  large  for  some  of  the  generations  which 
have  flourished  there.  Attracted  by  the  family 
record  elsewhere  to  this  old  and  well-kept  house, 
I  received  a  cordial  welcome  from  the  present  oc- 
cupant, Miss  Lucy  E.  Worcester,  who  is  of  the 
fifth  generation  at  that  home,  and  of  the  eighth 
in  this  country. 

Said  Miss  Worcester,  "  It  was  Captain  Noah, 
my  great-grandfather,  who  was  the  man  of  affairs 
here  when  the  war  broke  out.  He  was  then  forty 
years  of  age,  was  ensign  of  a  company  of  mili- 
tia, town  clerk,  committee  of  observation,  and  in 
other  positions  of  trust.  Having  been  active  in  all 
the  town's  meetings  during  the  agitation,  Noah 
Worcester  was  not  altogether  surprised  when  the 
outbreak  came.  It  was  about  noon  on  the  19th  of 
April  when  Deacon  John  Boynton,  one  of  the  com- 
mittee of  observation,  and  who  lived  in  the  south 
part  of  the  town,  came  riding  through  the  streets 
of  Hollis  at  the  top  of  his  horse's  speed,  calling  to 
every  one  as  he  passed,  'The  Regulars  are  com- 
ing, and  are  killing  our  men.'  He  drew  rein  at 
the  door  of  Captain  Worcester,  who  was  chairman 


of  the  Committee  of  Safety.  Captain  Noah,  my 
great-grandfather,  had  just  finished  dinner,  and 
was  standing  before  his  looking-glass,  with  face 
well  lathered,  in  the  act  of  shaving.  Without 
stopping  to  finish  his  toilet,  but  with  one  side  of 
his  face  still  whitened  for  the  razor,  he  hurried  to 
the  stable,  mounted  his  horse,  and  in  that  plight 
assisted  in  spreading  the  alarm.  Other  messen- 
gers were  despatched  to  different  parts  of  the 
town  ;  and  in  the  afternoon  of  that  day  ninety- 
two  men  met  on  Hollis  Common  with  muskets 
and  powder-horns,  each  man  furnished  with  one 
pound  of  powder  and  twenty  bullets." 

The  Hollis  company  made  choice  that  after- 
noon of  Reuben  Dow  as  captain,  John  Goss,  first 
lieutenant,  and  John  Cumings,  second  lieutenant. 
They  marched  off  toward  Concord,  and  went  into 
camp  at  Cambridge.  A  part  of  them  volunteered 
for  eight  months.  The  minute-men  of  Hollis  who 
continued  in  service  after  the  Lexington  alarm 
went  into  other  companies,  and  were  mustered 
into  the  Massachusetts  regiment  commanded  by 
Colonel  Prescott,  whose  family  seat,  as  we  have 
seen,  was  very  near  Hollis,  and  who  was  con- 
nected with  families  of  that  town,  his  wife  being 
Abigail  Hale  of  Hollis,  a  sister  of  Colonel  John 

"  Another  patriot  who  turned  out  from  this 
home  on  the  19th  was  my  great-uncle,  Noah  Wor- 
cester, Jr.,  who  was  but  sixteen  years  of  age.     He 


went  as  fifer.  Captain  Noah,  who  had  his  title  as 
a  member  of  the  State  Militia,  was  town  clerk  at 
this  time,  and  we  are  indebted  to  his  faithfulness 
for  many  facts. 

We  find  that  the  first  town  meeting  after  the 
experience  of  April  19  was  on  the  23d  inst.  Col- 
onel John  Wentworth  sent  out  a  letter  to  each 
town  on  the  day  after  the  Lexington  alarm.  That 
sent  to  Hollis  is  recorded  in  Noah  Worcester's 
handwriting,  and  is  as  follows:  — 

Gentle?nen,  —  This  moment  melancholy  intelligence  has 
been  received  of  hostilities  being  commenced  between  the 
troops  under  the  command  of  General  Gage,  and  our  breth- 
ren of  the  Massachusetts  Bay.  The  importance  of  our  exert- 
ing ourselves  at  this  critical  moment  has  caused  the  provincial 
committee  to  meet  at  Exeter,  and  you  are  requested  in- 
stantly to  choose  and  hasten  forward  a  delegate  or  delegates 
to  join  the  Committee,  and  aid  them  in  consulting  measures 

necessary  for  our  safety. 

^  J.  Wentworth. 

/;/  behalf  of  the  Co7nviittee  of  Safety. 

Province  of  New   Hampshire 
Hillsborough  County,  SS. 

Special  Town  Meeting. 

April  ii^  1775- 
Pursuant  to  the  above  notice  and  request,  the  inhabitants 
of  the  town  of  Hollis  being  met  unanimously  voted,  that 
Samuel  Hobart,  Esq.,  be  and  hereby  is  appointed  to  repre- 
sent the  town  at  Exeter,  with  other  delegates,  that  are  or 
shall  be  appointed  by  the  several  towns  of  this  Province,  for 
the  purpose  above  mentioned. 

Noah  Worcester,  Towti  Clerk. 


To  any  one  who  studies  the  records  of  Hollis, 
kept  by  the  patriot  clerk  Noah  Worcester,  it 
must  be  apparent  that  everything  was  done  with 
system,  and  that  their  response  on  the  19th  was 
serious  and  deliberate.  The  special  town  meeting 
of  the  twenty-eighth  shows  us  that  while  in  gov- 
ernmental affairs  they  were  obliged  to  work  with 
the  Province  of  New  Hampshire,  their  afifilia- 
tions  were  with  the  patriots  of  Massachusetts. 
Noah  Worcester  records  :  — 

Special  Meeting. 

April  2^,  1775. 
Colonel  John  Hale,  Moderator. 

At  a  meeting  of  the  town  of  Holies  called  on  a  sudden 
emergency  in  the  day  of  our  public  distress. 

1st.  Voted,  that  we  will  pay  two  commissioned  officers, 
four  non-commissioned  officers,  and  thirty-four  rank  and  file, 
making  in  the  whole  forty  good  and  able  men,  to  join  the 
army  in  Cambridge,  paying  said  officers  and  men,  the  same 
wages  the  Massachusetts  men  receive,  and  will  also  victual 
the  same  till  such  time  as  the  resolution  of  the  General  Court 
or  the  Congress  of  the  Province  of  New  Hampshire  shall  be 
known  respecting  the  raising  of  a  standing  army  the  ensuing 

They  also  made  arrangements  at  this  meeting 
for  providing  for  poor  families  of  those  patriots 
who  were  in  camp  at  Cambridge,  and  that  the 
grain  raised  for  the  poor  of  Boston  be  divided 
between  the  army  and  the  needy  families  of  the 

These    records   show   that    ''  Province    of    New 


Hampshire  "  was  used  in  all  warrants  for  town 
meetings  until  after  the  battle  of  Bunker  Hill, 
from  that  time  till  July  4,  1776,  the  word  "Colony" 
was  used,  and  after  the  Declaration  of  Indepen- 
dence the  word  *'  State  "  took  the  place.  Men 
absent  in  the  army  were  allowed  to  have  a  written 
vote  in  town  affairs,  which  was  counted  the  same 
as  if  the  men  were  present  in  person. 

"The  most  trying  experience  of  the  men  of  our 
town  did  not  come  until  the  17th  of  June,  when 
we  had  our  share  in  good  measure.  Most  of  our 
men  were  with  Colonel  Prescott,  but  a  few  were 
with  Colonel  Reed ;  and  all  were  present  at  the 
battle  of  Bunker  Hill,  which  sent  sorrow  to  the 
homes  of  Hollis  as  to  no  other  town  in  the  Prov- 
ince. The  loss  of  Hollis  in  killed  was  fully  equal 
to  two-fifths  of  the  killed  and  missing  in  the  two 
New  Hampshire  regiments,  and  greater  than  that 
of  any  other  town  of  New  Hampshire. 

The  list  recorded  on  the  memorial  tablets  ^  at 
Charlestown  is  as  follows  :  — 

prescott's  regiment. 

Dow''s  company.  —  Sergt.  Nathan  Blood,  Phineas  Nev- 
ers,'^  Thomas  Wheat,  Jr.,  Peter  Poor,  Isaac  Hobart,  Jacob 

Moors" s  company.  —  Ebenezer  Youngman. 

These  names  are  among  the  list  on  Soldiers 
Monument  at  Hollis. 

1  Thomas  Colburn,  credited  to  Dunstable,  is  claimed  by  Hollis. 

2  The  family  spelling  is  Nevens. 

Bunker  Hill  Monument 


The  wounded  were  Captain  Reuben  Dow, 
Ephraim  Blood,  Francis  Blood,  Francis  Powers, 
Thomas  Pratt,  William  Wood.  Caleb  Eastman 
was  killed  at  Cambridge  two  days  after  the  battle 
by  the  bursting  of  his  gun.  James  Fisk  and  Jere- 
miah Shattuck  died  of  sickness  at  the  Cambridge 
camp  before  the  battle. 

The  Hollis  patriots  furnished  all  their  own 
equipments,  and  also  their  clothes,  as  did  the 
soldiers  generally  during  the  first  year  of  the  war. 
Many  articles  were  lost  on  the  17th  of  June,  and 
subsequently  each  person  filed  a  list  with  their 
estimated  value.     It  is  headed  as  follows  :  — 

Cambridge,  Dec.  22,  1775. 

This  may  certify  that  we,  the  subscribers,  in  Capt.  Reuben 

Dovv's    company,    in   Col.   William    Prescott's    regiment,   in 

the  Continental  army,  that  we  lost  the  following  articles,  in 

the  late  engagement  on  Bunker  Hill  on  the  17th  of  June  last. 

The  one  meeting  with  the  greatest  loss  was 
Nahum  Powers  :  — 

"I  knaps'k  \s.  d^d.,  i  tump'e  \s.  2d.,  hat  3i-.,  jacket  8j-., 
bayonet  6i'.'" 

Noah  Worcester,  Jr.,  was  one  of  the  losers  :  — 

"Knapsack  is.  Sd.,  i  tumline^  li".  2d.^' 

1  "A  tump-line  was  a  strap  to  be  placed  across  the  forehead,  to 
assist  a  man  in  carrying  a  pack  on  his  back." —  ]Vorcester''s 
Quarto  Dictionaiy . 


The  inventory  of  lost  articles  perpetuates  the 
names  of  twenty-eight  men  of  Hollis  who  were 
in  the  battle  of  Bunker  Hill,  besides  the  commis- 
sioned officers.  Another  paper,  in  the  handwrit- 
ing of  Captain  Dow,  shows  the  loss  of  equipments 
of  the  six  men  of  Hollis  belonging  to  his  com- 
pany killed  in  the  battle. 

Cambridge,  Dec.  22,  1775. 

Nathan  Blood,      Isaac  Hobart,    Jacob  Boynton, 
Thomas  Wheat,     Peter  Poor,        Phineas  Nevins. 

The  men  whose  names  are  above  written  belonged  to 
Capt.  Dow's  company  and  Col.  William  Prescott's  regiment, 
and  were  all  killed  at  Bunker  Hill  on  the  17th  of  June  last, 
and  were  furnished  each  of  them  with  a  good  gun,  judged  to 
be  worth  Eight  Dollars  a  piece  —  also  were  furnished  with 
other  materials,  viz.,  Cartridge  Boxes,  Knapsacks,  and  Tump- 
lines,  and  were  well  clothed  for  soldiers.  Also  had  each  of 
them  a  good  blanket.     Nathan  Blood  had  a  good  Hanger. 

Eight  Hollis  soldiers,  who  were  in  Colonel 
Reed's  regiment  and  m  service  on  that  day,  lost 
various  articles.  Phineas  Hardy  lost ;  "  i  blanket, 
coat,  shirt,  breeches."  As  Hardy's  loss  must  have 
been  his  extra  clothing,  it  appears  that  the  good 
people  of  Hollis  saw  that  their  soldier  boys  in 
camp  at  Cambridge  were  well  clothed. 

Our  men  fought  in  their  shirt-sleeves ;  the  heat 
of  the  day  caused  them  to  throw  aside  their  coats 
as  when  in  the  hayfield.  This  accounts  for  the 
loss  of  so  many  coats  and  other  garments. 


The  Hollis  patriots  who  served  to  the  credit 
of  Massachusetts  had  a  share  in  the  bounty  of  a 
military  coat.  A  receipt  signed  by  forty-seven 
men  is  their  acknowledgment  of  the  bounty.  The 
heirs  or  widows  of  the  deceased  soldiers  received 
an  equivalent  for  the  coats.  In  some  cases  it  de- 
volved upon  the  selectmen  to  decide  who  was  the 
person  legally  entitled  to  the  pay,  as  the  following 
voucher  shows  :  — 

We  Hereby  Certify  that  the  widow  Experience  Shat- 
tuck  is  the  proper  person  to  receive  the  clothing  belonging 
to  Jeremiah  Shattuck  who  belonged  to  Capt.  Reuben  Dow's 
company  in  Col.  Wm.  Prescott's  regiment  and  is  dead. 
Noah  Worcester,  ^ 
Jacob  Jewett,  V  Selectmen. 

Oliver  Lawrence,  ) 

The  selectmen  also  certify  that  Captain  Dow  is  the  person 
to  receive  the  clothing  due  to  Peter  Poor,  a  transient  person, 
who  belonged  to  the  Hollis  company,  an,d  was  killed  at 
Bunker  Hill. 

It  was  when  Hollis's  cup  of  sorrow  was  brimful 
that  an  urgent  call  was  made  for  more  men.  It 
came  from  General  Sullivan,  then  in  command 
of  the  Continental  troops  at  Winter  Hill,  to  the 
New  Hampshire  Committee  of  Safety,  and  reads 
as  follows  :  — 

Winter  Hill,  iYov.  30,  1775. 

Sirs,  —  Gen.  Washington  has  sent  to  New  Hampshire 
for  thirty-one  companies  to  take  possession  of  and  defend 
our  lines  in  room  of  the  Connecticut  forces  who  most  scanda- 


lously  refuse  to  tarry  till  the  ist  of  January.  I  must  there- 
fore entreat  your  utmost  exertions  to  forward  the  raising 
those  companies,  lest  the  enemy  should  take  advantage  of 
their  absence  and  force  our  lines.  As  the  Connecticut  forces 
will  at  all  events  leave  us  at  or  before  the  loth  of  next  month, 
pray  call  upon  every  true  friend  of  his  country  to  assist  with 
heart  and  hand  in  sending  forward  these  companies  as  soon 
as  possible. 

Sirs,  I  am  in  extreme  haste, 

Your  Obt.  Serv't., 

John  Sullivan. 
To  the  Committee  of  Safety  at  Exeter. 

The  demand  was  met,  and  two  thousand  New 
Hampshire  patriots  were  soon  in  service,  remain- 
ing till  the  following  March,  when  the  British 
evacuated  Boston.  Miss  Worcester  continued  her 
story  : — 

"  Two-thirds  of  the  Twenty-sixth  Company  vol- 
unteered from  Hollis  ;  and  my  great-grandfather, 
Noah  Worcester,  was  captain,  going  from  this 
house,  leaving  the  cares  of  a  large  family  to  be 
shared  between  his  wife  and  aged  father.  The 
young  men  were  so  fired  with  patriotism  that  they 
were  anxious  to  enter  the  service  before  they  were 
liable  to  do  military  duty,  and  so  great  was  the 
need  that  many  of  them  were  accepted  before  they 
were  sixteen  years  of  age.  My  grandfather,  Jesse 
Worcester,  was  scarcely  fifteen  when  he  entered 
the  service;  as  he  was  too  short,  he  put  pebbles  in 
his  shoes  for  fear  he  would  not  pass  muster." 

This  boy  soldier  was   one  of   twenty-five  who 



went  on  a  six-months'  campaign  to  the  northward. 
Daniel*  Emerson,  Jr.,  was  captain  of  the  company. 
In  different  campaigns  to  the  end  of  the  war 
these  patriots  from  Hollis  were  found  doing  faith- 
ful service.  It  is  worth  our  while  to  pause  at  the 
Worcester  hearth-stone,  and  consider  the  charac- 
ter of  the  patriots  of  1775  as  manifest  in  after  life. 

Worcester  Homestead,  Hollis,  N.H. 

Four  of  the  sons  of  Captain  Noah  Worcester  be- 
came prominent  clergymen,  and  filled  honored 
positions;  but  they  never  forgot  this  old  home, 
and  loved  to  return  to  it,  and  here,  laying  aside 
all  restraint,  live  over  again  those  days  when  they 
went  out  from  this  home  to  do  service  for  their 
country.  Thanksgiving  Day  was  their  annual  ju- 
bilee. The  day  when  these  dignified  ministers, 
fully  six  feet  tall,  roamed  over  the  farm,  and  gath- 



Jesse  Worcester 

ered  around  the  festive 
board,  where  lay  prostrate 
the  best  turkey  of  the 
flock,  surrounded  by  pies 
and  puddings,  and  every 
thing  that  culinary  art 
could  devise.  After  din- 
ner they  would  walk  the 
rooms,  and  join  in  sing- 
ing '' Coronation." 

Prominent  upon  the 
walls  of  the  best  room  of 
this  Worcester  mansion  are  the  portraits  of  Jesse 
and  Sarah  (Parker)  Worcester.  This  boy  soldier, 
Jesse,  after  the  Revolution,  obtained  an  education, 
and  taught  school ;  but  failing  health  sent  him 
back  to  the  home  farm,  where  he  lived  for  many 
years.  In  conclusion  my 
hostess  informed  me,  — 

"  Turned  aside  from  a 
professional  life,  my 
grandfather  was  not  dis- 
couraged, but  with  his 
amiable  companion,  my 
grandmother,  made  a  com- 
mendable record.  Fif- 
teen children  were  born  to 
them.  Seven  of  their  nine 
sons  obtained  a  liberal 
education.     Two  of  them 

Sarah  Worcester 


followed  the  legal  profession  (one  becoming  a 
member  of  Congress  from  Ohio  during  the  Civil 
War),  one  was  a  teacher,  and  the  others  were 
ministers,  with  the  exception  of  Joseph  E.,  who 
was  the  author  of  several  histories,  geographies, 
etc.,  but  best  of  all,  the  dictionary  which  bears 
his  name."  The  daughters  all  honored  homes  of 
their  own. 

HoLLis  Training  Field 






BOWLDER. schoolteachers'   PAY  IN  THE  REV- 

Our  next  halt  was  at  the  Tenney  homestead, 
where  the  sixth  generation  of  the  family  and  name 
were  met  in  peaceful  contentment.  The  first  was 
William  Tenney,  who  settled  here  in  1747  with 
his  wife,  Anna  Jewett,  from  Rowley.  The  Lex- 
ington alarm  called  from  this  home  the  son  Wil- 
liam, who  had  not  yet  attained  his  majority.  He 
went  out  as  a  minute-man,  performed  the  part  of 
a  patriot  at  Cambridge,  and  later  responded  to 
the  urgent  call  for  troops  to  take  the  place  of  the 
Connecticut  forces  during;  the  first  winter  of 
the  war.  Notwithstanding  the  repeated  calls  for 
personal  service  in  the  army,  William  Tenney, 
who  was  known  as  captain,  married  Phoebe  Jewett 
in  1776,  and  they  together  conducted  the  business 
of  the  farm.  Of  their  ten  children,  the  youngest, 
Hon.  Ralph   Emerson  Tenney,  born  in   1790,  set- 



tied  at  the  homestead.  This  son  was  named  for 
Ralph  Emerson,  who,  according  to  a  gravestone 
record,  was  instantly  killed  by  the  accidental  dis- 
charge of  a  cannon,  while  exercising  the  matross 
on  the  day  before  the  advent  of  the  Tenney  son. 
Thus  the  parent  showed  his  regard  for  a  neighbor, 
fellow-soldier  in  the  war  for  liberty,  and  a  son  of 

Tenney  Homestead,  Hollis,  N. 

the  honored  minister  of  the  town.  Rev.  Daniel 
Emerson.  Of  the  next  generation  at  the  Tenney 
farm  came  William  N.  Tenney,  followed  by  his 
son  Ralph  E.  Tenney,  who,  with  his  children, 
enjoys  the  shade  of  the  same  spreading  trees  that 
have  protected  their  ancestors  from  the  scorching 
rays  of  the  sun,  when  walking  through  the  familiar 
path  leading  from  the  highway  to  the  old  home. 


Passing  through  the  village  in  a  northerly  course 
to  the  southerly  end  of  Long  Pond,  we  made  note 
of  the  former  homestead  of  Phineas  Hardy,  from 
which  three  sons  went  into  the  army.  Our  next 
halt  was  at  the  home  of  Deacon  Enoch  Jewett 
Colburn,  whose  story  was  so  full  of  interest  that 
we  could  but  tarry  and  hear  it  through.  This 
ofenuine  New  Eno:land  farmer  and  church  officer 
accepts  no  tradition  that  is  not  well  founded,  but 
having  good  evidence  of  the  origin  of  the  family 
in  Hollis,  tells  the  following:  — 

"•  Our  family  has  no  traceable  connection  with 
the  other  Jewetts  of  Hollis.  Enoch,  my  grand- 
father, did  not  serve  this  town  in  the  war,  but  it 
was  the  Revolution  that  led  him  to  come  here. 
He  was  with  Washington's  army  during  that  dread- 
ful winter  at  Valley  Forge,  and  shared  in  the  hard- 
ships of  the  soldiers." 

"  On  retiring  from  White  Marsh  to  Valley  Forge,  the  tents 
of  the  American  Army  were  exchanged  for  log  huts,  which 
constituted  acceptable  habitations  to  his  nearly  naked  and 
barefoot  troops,  who  had  tracked  their  way  from  White 
Marsh,  by  the  blood,  which,  running  from  the  bare  and 
mangled  feet  of  the  soldiers,  stained  the  rough  and  frozen 
road  throughout  its  whole  extent.  They  were  in  a  destitute 
and  deplorable  situation  ;  and,  to  add  to  their  miseries,  fam- 
ine began  to  make  its  appearance.  The  British  in  Philadel- 
phia gave  good  gold  for  what  the  farmers  brought  to  town, 
while  Washington  could  only  pay  them  in  Continental  scrip, 
which,  already  depreciated,  became  less  in  value." 


"As  the  spring  of  1778  opened,"  said  Mr. 
Colburn,  "Washington  sent  out  squads' of  men  to 
gather  provisions.  My  grandfather  was  one  of  a 
squad  sent  into  northern  New  England  to  tap  the 
maple-trees,  and  make  a  quantity  of  maple-sugar. 
They  chanced  to  come  to  this  town,  where  they 
built  a  cabin  and  began  the  business.  Grand- 
father, then  young  and  venturesome,  liked  the 
place,  and  after  the  war  closed  came  back,  mar- 
ried, and  settled  down  in  the  extreme  north  part 
of  this  town.  These  trees  and  stone  walls  are 
continual  reminders  of  him  whose  name  I  bear, 
and  whom  I  delight  to  honor." 

Our  route  now  takes  us  within  the  limits  of 
the  original  town  of  Monson,  whose  story  is  told 
under  the  title  of  "A  Lost  Town."  Its  heroes 
are  necessarily  classed  with  the  soldiers  of  Hol- 
lis  and  Amherst.  Notable  amons^  these  was  the 
Youngman  family  on  Pine  Hill,  who  gave  them- 
selves up  to  the  interests  of  the  country.  There 
were  five  of  them,  whose  time  spent  in  the  ser- 
vice aggregated  twenty  years.  Ebenezer  Young- 
man  of  Captain  Moors's  company  was  killed  at 
the  battle  of  Bunker  Hill.  The  other  brothers 
were  in  the  Continental  regiments.  Thomas  was 
among  the  victorious  at  Trenton  and  Princeton  in 
New  Jersey,  and  Nicholas  was  in  the  northern 
campaign.  Other  Old  Monson  men  were  Joseph 
French,  and  Ebenezer,  Christopher,  and  Stephen, 
sons  of  Lieutenant   Benjamin  Farley  of  Bedford, 


Mass.,  the  first  innkeeper  in  West  Dunstable 

Ensign  Samuel  Leeman,  who  turned  out  at  the 
Lexington  alarm,  was  in  the  battle  of  Bunker 
Hill,  in  the  Continental  army,  and  killed  near 
Saratoga,  October  10,  1777. 

Thomas  Emerson  and  Thaddeus  Wheeler  were 
of  the  number  who  had  seen  the  old  town  of 
Monson  abandoned.  There  were  also  the  Farleys, 
who  had  come  from  Billerica  in  Massachusetts. 
Caleb,  on  Pine  Hill,  the  pioneer  and  head  of  the 
family,  had  served  in  the  French  war  of  1755,  to 
the  credit  of  his  native  town.  He  served  in  a  suc- 
cession of  campaigns  in  the  Revolution,  but  passed 
safely  through  it  all,  and  attained  the  ripe  old  age 
of  one  hundred  and  two  years  and  five  months. 
There  was  Captain  William  Kendrick,  who  dis- 
charged the  alarm-gun  that  aroused  the  Monson 
people  on  April  19.  He  was  of  the  Hollis  Com- 
mittee of  Safety  in  lyyO-y,  and  in  Captain  Emer- 
son's mounted  company  at  Rhode  Island.  The 
Nevens  family  acted  well  their  part.  They  had 
come  from  Newton  and  Bedford  in  Massachusetts, 
and  had  strong  attachments  for  the  people  of  that 
Province.  Five  of  the  sons  of  William  left  an 
indelible  record  in  the  war.  They  were  William, 
Joseph,  Benjamin,  John,  and  Phineas. 

*' Early  in  the  afternoon  of  the  19th  of  April, 
three  of  these  brothers  were  -at  work  with  their 
crowbars   in   dio-o-ins;  stone  for  a   farm   wall    at   a 


short  distance  from  their  home.  At  the  coming 
in  sight  of  the  messenger,  they  had  partially 
raised  from  its  place  a  large  flat  stone  embedded 
in  a  farm  roadway.  Seeing  the  messenger  spur- 
ring towards  them  at  full  sp®ed,  one  of  the 
brothers  put  a  small  bowlder  under  the  large  stone 
to  keep  it  in  the  position  to  which  it  had  been 
raised,  and  all  stopped  and  listened  to  the  message 
of  the  horseman.  Upon  hearing  it,  leaving  the 
stone  as  it  was  in  the  roadway,  with  the  little 
bowlder  under  it,  they  hastened  to  the  house,  and 
all  three  of  them,  with  their  guns  and  equipments, 
hurried  to  the  Hollis  Common  to  join  their  com- 
pany. One  of  these  brothers,  Phineas,  was  killed 
at  Bunker  Hill ;  another,  William,  the  spring  fol- 
lowing lost  his  life  in  the  service  in  New  York." 
John  enlisted  for  the  Canada  expedition,  and  was 
never  heard  of  by  his  people.  As  a  family  memo- 
rial of  this  incident,  the  large  stone,  supported  by 
the  small  one,  was  permitted  to  remain  as  the 
men  left  it  when  they  answered  the  call  of  their 
country  ;  and  now  (1897)  it  has  been  transferred 
to  the  Common,  or  ''Old  Training  Field,"  and  so 
located  as  to  indicate  the  line  of  march  of  the 
ninety-two  minute-men  who  left  that  town  for 
Lexington,  April  19,  1775.  On  this  bowlder  has 
been  placed  a  bronze  tablet  on  which  the  names 
of  the  patriots  are  read,  together  with  the  follow- 
ing :  "The  Nevens  Brothers  were  at  work  on  this 
stone,  on  their  farm,  April  19,  1775,  and  left  it  in 


this  position  at  the  Minute  Men's  alarm,  to  join 
their  comrades  on  this  Common."  While  the  old 
town  of  Monson  has  been  lost,  and  the  Nevens 
home  gone  to  decay,  the  rough  stone  upon  which 
the  brothers  were  peacefully  laboring  when  the 
war-cry  reached  them  has  been  set  up  as  their 
pillar  of  memorial  and  of  their  comrades. 

As  neighbors  to  the  Nevens  family  were  the 
Baileys.  They  had  a  sawmill,  and  were  there  at 
work  when  they  received  the  Lexington  alarm. 
Daniel,  the  father,  with  sons  Daniel,  Joel,  and 
Andrew,  without  stopping  to  shut  down  the  gate, 
made  a  hasty  response. 

There  were  the  Wallingsfords,  who  had  gone 
from  Bradford,  Mass.,  to  Old  Monson.  Lieu- 
tenant David,  leaving  his  hoe  in  the  cornfield, 
appeared  with  his  gun  at  the  Common,  and  was 
of  the  company  who  so  nobly  represented  Hollis, 
He  entered  the  Continental  army,  and  was  cred- 
ited wnth  opening  the  fire  at  Bennington. 

The  loss  of  Old  Monson  occasioned  the  removal 
of  many  of  her  families,  and  consequently  these 
homes  went  to  decay;  but  in  our  route  we  have 
seen  the  family  sites,  and,  attracted  by  the  few 
struggling  trees,  with  the  tenacious  lilacs,  have 
traced  the  neglected  hearth-stones  of  the  patriots 
of  Old  Monson. 

Although  beyond  the  limits  of  Middlesex  County 
and  of  Massachusetts,  the  town  of  Hollis  has  been 
the  first  town  to  set  iip  a  monument  on  which  can 



be  read   the  names  of    all  who  responded  to  the 
alarm  of  April  19,  1775.     They  are  :  — 

Reuben  Dow,   Captain. 

John   Goss,   ist  Lieutenant. 

John  Comings,  2d  Lieutenant. 

Nathan  Blood. 
Joshua  Boynton. 
William  Nevens. 
Minott  Farmer. 
Sampson  Powers. 
James  Mcintosh. 
James  McConnor. 
Ephraim  Blood. 
David  Farnsworth. 
Noah  Worcester. 
Uriah  Wright. 
Thomas  Pratt. 
Elias  Boynton. 
Francis  Blood. 
Ezekiel  Proctor. 
Jacob  Spaulding. 
Ebenezer  Ball. 
Thomas  Colburn. 
Samuel  Hill. 
Benjamin  Cumings. 
Samuel  Jewett. 
Israel  Kenney. 
David  Ames, 
William  Wood. 
John  Campbell. 
Libbens  Wheeler. 
Abel  Brown. 
Nahum  Powers. 
Isaac  Stearns. 
Samuel  Hosley. 

Daniel  Taylor. 
Thomas  Kemp. 
Amos  Taylor. 
Jacob  Read. 
Thomas  Wlieat. 
Ebenezer  Farley. 

Benjamin  Abbott. 
William  Tenney. 
Samuel  Conery. 
Benjamin  Farley. 
Jonathan  Russ. 
John  Philbrick. 

Ebenezer  Youngman.  Ebenezer  Jaquith. 

James  Fisk. 
Josiah  Fisk. 
Jonathan  Eastman. 
Amos  Eastmam. 
Aaron  Hardy. 
Benjamin  Boynton. 
Ephraim  Pierce. 
Jonas  Blood. 
James  Colburn. 
William  French. 
Ebenezer  Wheeler. 

Manuel  Grace. 
Robert  Seaver. 
Nathan  Phelps. 
Daniel  Blood,  Jr. 
Edward  Johnson. 
Jacob  Danforth. 
Bray  Wilkins. 
Israel  Wilkins. 
Job  Bailey. 
Samuel  Leeman. 
Joseph  Minot. 

Benjamin  Wright,  Jr.  James  Dickey. 

Joseph  Bailey. 
Benjamin  Wright. 
Nathaniel  Wheat. 
Benjamin  Nevens. 
Joseph  Nevens. 
Nathaniel  Ball. 
Benjamin  Sanders. 
Ebenezer  Gilson. 
Thaddeus  Wheeler, 
Thomas  Patch. 
Samuel  Johnson. 

Jonathan  Ames. 
Randal  McDaniels. 
David  Wallingsford. 
Richard  Bailey. 
Nathan  Colburn. 
Abner  Keyes. 
Joel  Bailey. 
John  Atwell. 
Jesse  Wyman. 
Ephraim  Howe. 


The  Haydon  homo  is  one  of  the  few  that  shel- 
teretl  the  patriots  of  1775  and  of  1861.  The  an- 
cient house  stands  with  as  much  apparent  firmness 
as  when  Samuel  Hayden  came  from  Marlborough, 
Massachusetts,  and  located  here  in  1761.  He  was 
attracted,  doubtless,  by  the  mill  privileges  which 
the  swift  stream  afforded,  and  which  has  fur- 
nished business  for  the  several  generations  who 
have  made  a  most  commendable  record  at  this 
place.  Josiah,  a  nephew  of  the  pioneer,  was  the 
second  of  the  family,  and  was  followed  by  his 
son  Samuel,  the  drummer  of  the  Old  Monson  com- 
pany. He  is  succeeded  by  two  sons,  who  cherish 
the  home,  till  the  soil,  and  tend  the  mill  after  the 
most  approved  plan.  A  family  reminder  of  not 
only  the  Revolution,  but  of  the  French  war,  is  a 
powder-horn,  on  which  are  carved  figures  repre- 
senting a  line  of  Indians  with  their  war  imple- 
ments, and  the  words  :  — 


If   I   \\o  lose,   and  you  do  find, 
Give  it   to  me,   for  it   is  mine. 

This  horn  and  the  family  musket  were  taken 
down  from  their  places  above  the  open  fire,  ana 
carried  by  Samuel  Hayden  into  the  Revolution. 
The  maternal  head  of  the  Hayden  family  was  Han- 
nah Bailey,  daughter  of  Samuel  who  was  killed  at 
Bunker  Hill.     Hannah  was  a  schoolteacher  in  An- 


dover  when  the  troubles  with  the  mother  country 
broke  out.  At  the  close  of  a  short  term  of  her 
school,  there  was  a  great  scarcity  of  money,  and 
the  school  committee  allowed  the  teacher  to  take 
her  choice  between  the  bills  of  credit  of  the 
time  or  rolls  of  wool,  in  payment  for  her  services. 
She  took  the  latter,  and  spun  them  into  yarn,  and 
made  cloth,  which  later  became  useful  to  her  in 
completing  her  wedding  outfit.  In  proof  of  this, 
her  grandsons  at  the  old  home  brought  forward 
a  liberal  sample  of  the  fabric. 

Our  journey  through  Old  Mon-^son  was  made 
doubly  interesting  by  an  additional  guide,  —  Mr. 
Charles  S.  Spaulding,  son  of  Asaph  S.  Spaulding 
and  Hannah  Colburn.  In  common  with  other  res- 
idents of  Hollis,  our  guide  has  a  connection  with 
Middlesex  families.  He  says,  "There  were  induce- 
ments held  out  for  immigration,  a  special  effort 
being  made  by  means  of  handbills  circulated 
through  Middlesex  and  Essex  Counties. 

Having  completed  the  circuit,  I  halted  at  the 
home  of  my  efficient  guide,  Mr.  Cyrus  F.  Burge, 
on  the  farm  where  his  father  has  spent  his  days, 
and  where  his  great-grandfather  settled  in  1762, 
and  from  which  Ephraim  Burge  went  into  the 
war,  doing  service  in  the  northern  campaign  when 
Burgoyne  surrendered. 

The  old  burying-place  of  Hollis  is  a  typical 
churchyard  as  far  as  there  can  be  one  in  a  com- 
paratively new   country.      Having   completed   my 


search  for  the  footprints  of  the   patriots  around 
the  old  hearth-stones,  and  remembering  that  — 

"The  paths  of  glory  lead  but  to  the  grave," 

I  turned  in  to  the  narrow  acre  with  its  grass-grown 
paths,  and  sought  for  a  few  hints  of  the  chapter  of 
patriotism  chiselled  on  the  moss-grown,  tottering 
slabs  which  stand  like  weary  sentinels. 
First  I  read  :  — 



Who  Departed  this  Life  October  ye  29TH,  1787, 

IN  YE  68th  Year  of  his  Age. 

It  was  so  soon  after  the  war  that  the  people 
had  not  begun  to  fully  realize  the  import  of  the 
message  so  promptly  spread  through  the  town  by 
this  faithful  deacon. 

I  next  read  the  name  of  — 


Who  Departed  this  Life 

March  6,  1808,  in  the  89TH  Year  of  his  Age. 

Even  at  this  date  no  note  is  made  of  the  part 
taken  by  this  village  hero.  The  common  grave 
at  Bunker  Hill  where  were  buried  so  many  of  the 
pride  of  Hollis  is  recalled  by  the  brief  note  on  a 
stone,  on  which  is  read,  ''  Lucy  Baldwin,  daughter 
of  Thomas  Wheat,  who  was  killed  at  the  Battle  of 
Bunker  Hill." 


The  grave  of  Captain  Reuben  Dow  recalled 
that  scene  on  the  Common  opposite,  when  he  at 
the  head  of  the  HoUis  minute-men  marched  off  to 
Cambridge.  He  lived  till  181 1,  having  completed 
more  than  fourscore  years.  An  erect  stone  tells 
that  Doctor  John  Hale  was  born  October  24th, 
1731,  and  died  October  22d,  1791.  He  was  colo- 
nel of  a  regiment,  and  resigned  to  enter  the  ser- 
vice as  surgeon,  serving  through  the  war.  Near 
by  we  read  that  Dr.  William  Hale  was  born, 
July  27th,  1762,  and  died  October  10,  1854.  He 
entered  the  service  as  aid  to  his  father  at  the  age 
of  fifteen  years,  and  served  through  the  war. 

Among  these  stones,  ''  with  uncouth  rhymes 
and  shapeless  sculpture  deck'd,"  are  reminders 
of  the  Emerson  family,  of  which  New  England  is 
justly  proud.  As  I  shall  refer  to  the  Emerson 
clergymen  of  this  locality  in  another  connection, 
I  will  only  call  the  attention  of  my  readers  to  the 
record  of  some  of  the  sons  of  Rev.  Daniel  Emer- 
son of  Hollis  who  lie  buried  with  those  whom  they 




AS    AN    OFFICER    OF    THE    CHURCH, 



AS    A    FRIEND    OF    THE    POOR, 



OCXOBiiR   4,    1820,    ^T.    74. 

I -.8 


On  a  stone  at  the  grave  of  another  son  of  the 
Hollis  minister  is  read  :  — 




the  matross 

October  4,  1790, 

IN  THE  30TH  Year  of  his  Age, 

We  drop  apace. 
By  nature  some  decay, 
And  some  the  gusts  of  fortune  sweep  away. 

Nevens's  Boulder 





When  on  that  field  his  band  the  Hessians  fought, 
Briefly  he  spoke  before  the  fight  began  : 
"  Soldiers,  those  German  gentlemen  were  bought 
For  four  pounds  eight  and  seven  pence  per  man, 
By  England's  King  ;  a  bargain,  it  is  thought. 
Are  we  worth  more?  let's  prove  it  while  we  can; 
For  we  must  beat  them,  boys,  ere  set  of  sun. 
Or  my  wife  sleeps  a  widow."  —  It  was  done. 


It  was  my  good  fortune  to  meet  Mr.  John  Col- 
burn  ^  on  the  celebration  of  his  ninety-sixth  birth- 
day at  his  home  in  Hollis,  N.H.  He  was  strong 
in  mind  and  body,  and  spent  the  hours  of  this  an-- 
niversary  in  recalling  the  scenes  of  the  ])ast.  It 
was  like  breaking  the  seals  of  closed  volumes  to 
many  in  attendance. 

"  I  was  one  of  thirteen  children  born  to  my 
parents,  James  and  Susannah  (Hardy)  Colburn. 
We  had  a  hard  struggle  in  our  youth,  for  my 
father  was  not  a  strong  man.      He  lost  his  health 

1  See  story  of  Hollis. 


in  the  northern  campaigns  of  ''jG  and  'jj.  My 
earliest  recollections  are  of  his  accounts  of  service 
in  the  war.  He  used  to  tell  us,  '  I  was  only  in 
my  teens  when  I  entered  the  Provincial  service. 
I  passed  through  the  battle  of  Bunker  Hill  safely, 
while  my  neighbors  and  townsmen  fell  around 
me.  But  I  endured  great  hardship  in  the  cam- 
paign at  the  north  when  following  up  Burgoyne 
and  his  army.  Bridges  were  scarce  at  that  time, 
and  we  were  compelled  to  ford  the  rivers.  In 
wading  across  the  Mohawk  I  took  a  severe  cold, 
from  which  I  never  fully  recovered  ;  but  we  pushed 
on,  filled  with  contempt  for  Burgoyne,  who  had 
written  a  long  proclamation  to  the  Americans 
soon  after  his  arrival  in  the  country.  He  prom- 
ised great  things  to  them  if  they  would  lay  down 
their  arms  and  surrender  peaceably  to  the  British, 
but  threatened  terrible  things  if  they  continued  to 
oppose  the  king.  Among  other  evils,  he  said  he 
would  let  the  Indians  loose  among  them  if  they 
refused  to  surrender. 

Note.  — The  manner  in  which  the  Indians  were  inducted  into 
the  service  of  killing  the  patriots  of  America  is  seen  by  the  follow- 
ing: "  We  went  to-day  to  headquarters  in  Montreal,  to  be  present 
at  a  meeting  between  General  Carleton  and  all  the  nations  of  wild 
men,  since,  in  order  to  make  it  as  impressive  as  possible,  all  the 
chief  officers  of  the  army  were  expressly  invited  to  attend.  The 
chiefs  of  the  so-called  Iroquois  nation,  namely,  many  of  the  Onan 
tais,  Anajutais,  Nonlaquahuques,  and  Kanastaladi,  met  at  six  o'clock 
in  the  evening,  in  the  old  church  of  the  Jesuits,  which  had  been 
expressly  prepared  for  the  occasion.     The  high  choir  was  covered 


with  carpets,  upon  which  were  placed  a  row  of  stools.  In  the 
centre  was  a  large  armchair  for  Governor-General  Carleton,  who 
during  the  whole  of  the  meeting  kept  his  hat  upon  his  head.  Be- 
hind him  was  a  table,  near  which  sat  the  adjutant  generals,  Cap- 
tains Foy  and  Carleton,  who  served  as  secretaries.  There  were 
also  benches,  upon  which  sat  three  hundred  wild  men,  with  their 
pipes  lighted.  Every  nation  had  its  chief  and  interpreter,  the  lat- 
ter acting  as  spokesman  and  translating  into  French  all  that  was 
said  to  General  Carleton,  In  order,  however,  that  there  might  be 
no  mistakes  or  misunderstandings.  General  Carleton  had  also  his 
interpreter.  Thus  each  nation  spoke  for  itself.  The  substance  of 
what  they  said  was  that  they  had  heard  the  rebels  [Americans] 
had  risen  against  the  English  nation;  that  they  praised  the  valor 
of  General  Carleton  as  shown  in  frustrating  the  designs  of  the 
enemy;  that  they,  therefore,  loved  and  esteemed  him,  and  that 
they  had  come  to  offer  their  services  against  the  rebels.  .  .  .  All 
these  nations  were  engaged  for  one  year,  and  had  their  posts  as- 
signed them.  Before  leaving  they  all  passed  by  General  Carleton, 
shaking  hands  with  him  and  the  rest  of  the  officers.  The  evening 
and  night  were  spent  by  them  in  feasting  and  dancing,  which  had 
already  lasted  seven  days.  They  had  brought  with  them  a  few 
scalps  of  rebels  whom  they  had  killed,  and  with  which  they  hon- 
ored Generals  Carleton,  Burgoyne,  and  Phillips."  Other  Indian 
nations  were  also  brought  into  this  abominable  service.  They 
offered  "  their  grandfather,  the  King  of  England,  and  their  father, 
General  Carleton  "  their  services  against  the  Bostonians.  One  of 
the  leaders  of  the  company  wore  at  this  time  the  coat  of  General 
Braddock,  whom  he  had  killed  in  the  fatal  expedition  of  1755. 
That  proud  general's  vest  was  also  worn  by  a  nine-year-old  son  of 
the  Indian  chief.  The  appropriation  of  a  dead  British  general's 
clothes  could  not  have  been  a  very  agreeable  sight  for  the  present 
actors  in  the  great  drama. 

*"This  announcement  filled  the  Americans  with 
indignation,  especially  the  army  engaged  in  the 
north.      Every  day  there  was  a  new  story  told  of 


Indian  barbarity.  Even  t.he  British  could  not 
safely  trust  their  savage  allies.  A  Tory  officer 
sent  a  party  of  Indians  to  escort  a  young  lady 
named  Jane  McCrea,  to  whom  he  was  engaged  in 
marriage,  within  the  British  lines.  -  When  on  the 
way,  the  Indian  escorts  fell  into  a  quarrel  over 
the  reward  they  were  to  receive,  and  in  the  diffi- 
culty, killed  the  girl,  and  bore  her  scalp  away, 
leaving  her  mangled  body  in  the  road. 

"  *  This  brutality  committed  near  her  neighbors 
and  friends  filled  the  whole  country  with  horror 
and  indignation,  and  even  General  Burgoyne  saw 
that  he  had  made  a  mistake  in  placing  confidence 
in  such  allies. 

*' '  I  was  with  General  John  Stark,  in  whom  we 
had  the  greatest  confidence.  Seth  Warner  and 
the  ''  Green  Mountain  Boys  "  were  with  us  in  the 
latter  part  of  the  campaign.  About  the  middle 
of  September,  1777,  the  two  armies  of  the  north 
were  near  each  other,  waiting  for  action.  Bur- 
goyne was  on  the  heights  of  Saratoga.  Gates, 
the  American  general  who  had  succeeded  Schuy- 
ler, was  on  some  heights  back  of  the  old  tavern 
known  as  *'Bemis  Inn."  On  the  19th  of  Septem- 
ber we  met,  near  the  village  of  Stillwater,  in 
bloody  battle,  which  lasted  several  hours  without 
any  apparent  result  to  either  side.  On  the  7th 
of  October  we  had  it  again,  in  about  the  same 
place.  We  fought  until  dark.  General  Frazer, 
Burgoyne's  favorite  general,  was  shot  through  the 


body,  and  soon  died.  Soon  after  this  battle,  when  ■ 
there  was  yet  doubt  as  to  what  the  final  results 
were  to  be,  we  saw  the  enemy  in  their  intrench- 
ments,  and  kept  up  our  cannonade,  not  knowing 
that  they  were  carrying  out  the  dying  request  of 
General  Frazer,  and  burying  him  in  the  trench  on 
the  height  where  he  had  received  his  mortal 
wound.  While  we  were  waiting  in  uncertainty, 
the  generals  of  the  two  armies  were  carrying  on  a 
correspondence  in  regard  to  terms  of  Burgoyne's 
surrender.  It  was  at  length  agreed  that  his  army 
should  lay  down  their  arms,  and  march  to  Boston 
as  prisoners  of  war,  and  be  sent  to  Europe,  under 
a  promise  to  take  up  arms  no  more  in  the  war. 
I  had  no  love  for  any  of  those  who  were  fighting 
against  us,  but  especially  despised  the  Hessians, 
whom  we  thought  were  willingly  hired  to  come 
to  this  country  to  subdue  us.  By  a  special  act  of 
generosity  on  the  part  of  General  Gates,  none  of 
us  were  allowed  to  see  the  enemy  when  they 
marched  out  to  the  fields  of  Saratoga  and  there 
stacked  their  guns  ;  but  when  the  march  off  to- 
wards Boston  was  begun,  it  became  necessary  to 
have  a  guard,  and  I  was  of  that  number.  Up  to 
this  time  I  had  entertained  nothing  but  contempt 
for  the  women,  wives  of  the  German  soldiers,  who 
followed  the  army  ;  but  when  I  saw  the  family  of 
the  Brunswick  general,  I  came  to  the  conclusion 
that  they  were  people  of  distinction,  and  were 
actuated    by    other   than    sinister   motives.       My 


sympathies  went  out  for  them  in  the  long  journey 
across  the  country,  as  we  guarded  the  captured 
thousands  to  Cambridge,  Mass.,  where  they  were 
lodged  in  the  abandoned  barracks  of  the  army 
which  kept  the  British  shut  up  in  Boston.'  " 

To  the  above  story  of  James  Colburn,  a  soldier 
of  the  Revolution,  as  told  to  me  in  substance  by 
his  son  John  when  lacking  but  four  years  of  a 
century  of  life,  I  am  indebted  for  the  suggestion 
of  the  following  story  of  the  German  soldiers  who 
fought  for  George  III.  in  the  Revolution  :  — 

Note.  —  Much  has  justly  been  said  in  condemnation  of  the 
English  Government  for  employing  Germans  in  the  war  for  the 
subjugation  of  her  revolted  American  Colonies,  and  generations  of 
the  descendants  of  those  who  fought  the  hirelings  have  naturally 
imbibed  feelings  of  contempt  for  the  German  army.  But  it  should 
be  remembered  that  at  that  time  the  German  soldier  belonged, 
body  and  soul,  to  him  to  whom  he  had  sold  himself.  He  had  no 
country.  He  was  severed  from  every  tie;  in  fact,  he  was,  in  every 
sense  of  the  word,  the  property  of  his  military  lord,  who  could  do 
with  him  as  he  saw  fit.  They  did  not  prove  to  be  as  helpful  as 
it  was  expected,  but  were  found  totally  unfit  for  the  business  in 
which  they  were  engaged.  They  could  not  march  through  the 
woods  and  encounter  the  difficulties  incident  to  war  in  our  then 
almost  unsettled  country.  Many  of  them  deserted  to  our  army 
before  and  after  the  surrender,  or  convention,  as  it  was  more 
tenderly  designated  at  the  request  of  Burgoyne.  We  have  in  New 
England  to-day  descendants  of  Hessians  for  whom  the  English 
Government  was  obliged  to  pay  the  agreed  price,  —  being  absent 
from  the  returning  army,  they  were  rated  as  dead.  Descendants 
of  Hoffmaster,  Kyar,  Patio,  and  others,  have  become  good  citizens 
of  Massachusetts;  and  no  braver  soldiers  fought  for  the  Union  at 
Gettysburg  than  some  of  the  representatives  of  those  men  who 
came  to  this  country  as  Hessians.     More  of  the  deserters  settled  in 

hessiajvs  in  the  war 


New  York,  and  after  a  full  century,  a  German's  cabin  was  seen 
at  Charlestown,  Warren  County,  of  that  State.  The  Hessian  offi- 
cers were  equipped  with  everything  for  their  comfort,  as  though 
their  trip  to  America  were  only  an  excursion  for  pleasure.  A  to- 
bacco-box, which  belonged  to  one  of  the  un- 
fortunate officials,  is  now  seen  in  a  collection 
of  relics  in  the  town  of  Bedford.  The 
owner  fought  and  died  in  the  northern 
campaign.  This  pocket  companion 
was  taken  to  Canada  by  a  Brit- 
ish soldier  of  the  king,  and  at 
length  became  the  property 
of  an  English  lady  at  Hali- 
fax, N.S.,  and  was  by  her 
presented  to  a  Boston  lady, 
whose  interests   in   the    town 

of  Bedford  occasioned  it  to  be  finally  deposited  at  her  old  home- 
stead, and  in  the  house  from  which  the  minute-men  of  Bedford 
set  out  for  Concord  fight  on  April  19,  1775.  In  the  Salem  Insti- 
tute may  be  seen  a  hat  which  belonged  to  a  Hessian  officer  who 
gave  up  his  life  in  the  "  Jerseys." 

Hessian  Tobacco-box 





No  foreign  king  shall  give  us  laws,  no  British  tyrant  reign, 
For  independence  made  us  free,  and  independence  we'll  maintain. 
We'll  charge  our  foes  from  post  to  post,  attack  their  works  and  lines, 
Or  by  some  well-laid  stratagem,  we'll  make  them  all  Burgoynes. 

Rev.  Samuel  Hidden. 

The  Germans  and  Hessians  were  in  a  sorry 
plight.  They  came  not  here  voluntarily,  but  were 
caught  while  in  their  churches  and  elsewhere,  and 
were  forced  into  the  service. 

The  wives  who  were  with  them  helped  make 
up  the  pitiable  procession  that  passed  through  the 

"  They  had  a  collection  of  wild  animals  in  their  train  —  the 
only  thing  American  they  had  captured.  Here  could  be 
seen  an  artillery-man  leading  a  grizzly  bear,  that  every  now 
and  then  would  rear  upon  his  hind  legs  as  if  he  were  tired  of 
going  upon  all  fours,  or  occasionally  growl  his  disapprobation 
at  being  pulled  along  by  a  chain.  In  the  same  manner  a 
tame  deer  would  be  seen  tripping  lightly  after  a  grenadier. 


Young  foxes  were  also  observed  looking  sagaciously  from  the 
top  of  a  baggage- wagon,  or  a  young  racoon  securely  clutched 
under  the  arm  of  a  sharp-shooter."'' 

Their  advent  to  Cambridge  is  thus  described  by 
an  eye-witness  :  — 

"  On  Friday  we  heard  the  Hessians  were  to 
make  a  procession  on  the  same  route.  I  never 
had  the  least  idea  that  the  creation  produced  such 
a  sordid  set  of  creatures  in  human  figure,  —  poor, 
dirty,  emaciated  men  ;  a  great  many  women,  who 
seemed  to  be  the  beasts  of  burden,  having  bushel 
baskets  on  their  backs  by  which  they  were  bent 
double.  The  contents  seemed  to  be  pots  and 
kettles,  various  sorts  of  furniture,  children  peep- 
ing through  gridirons  and  other  utensils,  some 
very  young  infants  who  were  born  on  the  road. 
The  women  were  bare-footed,  and  clothed  in  dirty 
rags.  Such  effluvia  filled  the  air  while  they  were 
passing,  that  had  they  not  been  smoking  all  the 
time,  I  should  have  been  fearful  of  disease. 

"Among  these  prisoners  were  generals  of  the 
first  order  of  talent  ;  young  gentlemen  of  noble  and 
wealthy  families  aspiring  to  military  renown  ;  le- 
gislators of  the  British  realm  ;  and  avast  concourse 
of  other  men,  lately  confident  of  victory  and  of 
freedom  to  plunder  and  destroy,  were  led  captive 
through  the  pleasant  land  they  had  coveted,  to  be 
gazed  at  with  mingled  joy  and  scorn  by  those 
whose  homes  they  came  to  make  desolate.  Their 
march  was  solemn,  sullen,  and  silent." 


To  many  of  them  the  abandoned  barracks  of 
the  patriots  afforded  more  comfort  than  they  had 
been  enjoying,  while  to  some  the  best  quarters 
were  repulsive  in  the  extreme. 

Note.  —  The  reader  will  bear  in  mind  that  the  German  troops 
captured  and  marched  as  prisoners  to  Cambridge  were  only  a  por- 
tion of  the  whole  army  hired  from  that  country  by  the  King  of 
England  to  subdue  the  patriots.  They  were  first  met  in  combat  at 
Long  Island  in  August,  1776,  when  Washington  was  defeated  with 
a  loss  of  one  thousand  in  dead  and  wounded ;  but  before  the  year 
closed,  Washington  made  that  memorable  Christmas  1  call  upon  the 
enemy  after  crossing  the  Delaware,  and  captured  a  full  thousand  of 
the  Hessians. 

The  British  soldiers  were  quartered  in  the  bar- 
racks on  Prospect  Hill,  and  the  Germans  on  Win- 
ter Hill.  Cambridge  again  assumed  a  warlike 
appearance.  Besides  the  almost  six  thousand  pris- 
oners quartered  there,  a  small  army  of  patriots 
was  required  to  keep  guard  over  them.  Among 
the  guard  were  some  brave  men  who  had  appeared 
there  under  different  circumstances  in  the  spring 
of  1775.  The  command  of  the  guard  fell  to  Gen- 
eral Glover  of  Marblehead,  although  many  towns 
were  represented  in  the  rank  and  file.  In  the  al- 
most illegible  records  of  the  towns  may  be  deci- 
phered entries  like  the  following  :  — 

"  Men  to  take  and guai'd the  convention  troops.'''' 

William  R.  Lee  of  Marblehead,  who  had  two 
years  before  been  prominent  as  a  captain  at  the 

1  See  Story  of  Marblehead. 


Cambridge  camp,  was  again  on  the  ground,  but  as 
a  colonel,  with  his  troops  to  form  a  portion  of  the 

On  the  day  following  the  arrival  of  the  army. 
General  Burgoyne  and  his  two  major-generals, 
Phillips  and  Riedesel,  dined  by  invitation  with 
General  Heath,  the  commander  of  the  American 
forces  in  and  around  Boston.  The  dinner  is  de- 
scribed as  an  elegant  affair.  Whose  healths  were 
drunk  we  do  not  know.  Among  the  guests  were 
Generals  Glover  and  Whipple,  who  had  conducted 
the  British  part  of  the  capitulated  army  from  Sar- 
atoga. This  fine  beginning  was  too  good  to  last. 
Many  of  the  prisoners  were  too  base  to  appreciate 
favors;  as  utterly  incapable  of  manifesting  a  sense 
of  gratitude  as  they  were  of  understanding  the 
language  in  which  orders  were  given.  They  took 
advantage  of  the  liberty  given  them,  and  com- 
menced a  wholesale  destruction  of  fences,  sheds, 
barns,  fruit,  and  ornamental-trees,  and  everything 
available,  under  the  pretence  of  necessity  for  fuel. 
This  led  to  the  enforcement  of  more  rigid  meas- 
ures on  the  part  of  the  guard,  and  then  to  com- 
plaints from  the  prisoners,  and  a  general  disturb- 

It  is  apparent  that  General  Burgoyne  enter- 
tained no  hard  feelings  against  Colonel  Lee,  for 
there  is  credited  to  him  the  most  remarkable  kind- 
ness in  the  following  narrative.^ 

1  See  "  History  of  Marblehead  "  by  Roads. 


Captain  John  Lee,  brother  of  Colonel  William 
R.,  while  in  the  privateer  service,  was  taken  pris- 
oner in  1776,  and  sent  to  Forton  Prison, ^  England. 
He  was  there  submitted  to  the  most  cruel  treat- 
ment. Three  times  he  attempted,  with  a  few  of 
his  companions  in  misery,  to  make  an  escape ; 
but  as  often  failed,  and  received  a  worse  punish- 

At  length  he  was  allowed  the  range  of  the  larger 
apartments  and  yard  of  the  prison.  He  was  in- 
formed one  day  by  an  officer  that  there  was  some 
one  at  the  gate  who  had  been  granted  an  inter- 
view with  him.  On  going  to  the  entrance  he 
found  a  well  but  plainly  dressed  gentleman,  who 
asked,  "Are  you  Captain  John  Lee  of  Marble- 
head.'*"  and  being  satisfied  of  his  identity,  the 
strange  caller  presented  a  purse  containing  sev^- 
enty-five  guineas. 

The  prisoner  asked  in  astonishment  to  whom 
he  was  indebted  for  such  a  timely  and  most  ac- 
ceptable present.  "  No  matter,"  was  the  answer. 
And  then  the  gentleman  observed,  '*  With  a 
part  of  the  funds,  purchase,  or  procure  in  some 
way,  a  complete  suit  of  uniform  like  those  worn 
by  the  soldiers  of  the  guard  ;  and  this  even- 
ing place  yourself  in  some  obscure  corner  or  po- 
sition, whence  you  can  unperceived  fall  into  the 
ranks  when   they  go   the   rounds,  and   come   out 

1  Same  prison  mentioned  in  "A  Romance  of  War  "  in  "Be- 
neath Old  Roof  Trees  "  of  this  series. 


into  the  yard.  But  as  there  are  sentinels  who 
must  be  passed  before  you  reach  the  street,  the 
countersign  will  be  required  ;  "  which  was  then 
whispered  in  his  ear,  and  the  unknown  gentleman 

By  using  the  gold  freely  and  wisely  during  the 
day,  Captain  Lee  was  enabled  to  obtain  the  need- 
ful dress,  and  following  the  instructions  which  he 
had  so  strangely  received,  he  fell  into  the  ranks 
as  the  guard  passed  through  the  prison,  and  soon 
reached  the  yard.  Then  giving  the  countersign, 
he  passed  the  guard  at  the  outer  gate,  and  found 
himself  alone  in  the  street.  The  night  was  very 
dark,  and  the  roads  were  strange  to  him,  so  that 
he  did  not  know  where  to  go,  or  what  step  to 
take  next  to  make  sure  of  success.  While  he  was 
endeavoring  to  reach  a  decision,  the  gentleman 
who  gave  him  the  purse  came  up,  and  taking  him 
by  the  hand,  congratulated  him  upon  his  good 
fortune.  Then  conducting  him  to  a  carriage 
which  was  waiting  at  a  little  distance,  the  gentle- 
man requested  him  to  enter  it,  and  stated  that 
the  coachman  had  instructions  where  to  convey 
him.  As  he  entered  the  carriage  the  strange 
gentleman  wished  him  a  prosperous  and  safe  re- 
turn to  America,  and  was  about  taking  his  leave, 
when  Captain  Lee  again  asked  to  whom  he  was 
indebted  for  such  a  humane  and  generous  act. 
He  answered,  *' No  matter."  And  after  directing 
the  coachman  to  move  off,  he   bowed   and    said. 


''  Farewell,  God  bless  you  !  "  and  was  soon  out  of 

On  his  arrival  in  America,  Captain  Lee  related 
the  circumstances  of  his  escape  to  his  brother, 
Colonel  William  R.  Lee,  and  expressed  a  strong 
desire  to  know  who  the  gentleman  could  have 
been,  and  what  were  his  motives  for  extending  as- 
sistance to  an  utter  stranger  and  a  natural  enemy. 
Colonel  Lee  replied,  — 

*'  I  can  inform  you.  When  General  Burgoyne 
and  his  army  arrived  at  Cambridge  as  prisoners  of 
war,  I  had  the  command  of  the  troops  which  were 
stationed  there  as  guard,  and  again  for  several 
months  previous  to  his  departure  for  England. 
When  I  waited  upon  him  to  take  leave  on  the  day 
of  his  departure,  he  thanked  me  in  the  most  cordial 
manner  for  my  attentions,  and,  as  he  expressed  it, 
the  gentlemanly  and  honorable  manner  in  which 
I  had  treated  him  and  his  officers,  and  wished 
to  know  whether  there  was  anything  which  he 
could  do  for  me  when  he  reached  England.  I  in- 
formed him  I  had  a  brother  who  for  more  than 
two  years  had  been  confined  in  Forton  Prison ; 
and  as  he  was  entirely  destitute  of  funds,  I  should 
consider  it  a  great  favor  if  he  would  take  charge 
of  seventy-five  guineas,  and  cause  them  to  be  de- 
livered to  him  on  his  arrival.  He  replied,  'Why 
did  you  not  inform  me  before  that  you  had  a 
brother  a  prisoner  in  England  }  You  shall  not 
send  any  money  to  him  ;  I  will  see  that  it  is  sup- 


plied,  and  shall  with  great  pleasure  do  everything 
in  my  power  to  render  his  situation  as  comfort- 
able as  possible.'     I  thanked  him  for  his  generous 
offer  of  services,  but  informed  him  that  I  could 
not  consent  to  receive  pecuniary  aid,  and  desired 
as  a  special  favor  that 
he  would  be  so  kind  as 
to  deliver  you  the  purse 
which    I    put    into    his 
hand.       'It    shall    be 
done,'    he    said ;    *  and 
you    may    be    assured 
that   I    shall   find    him 
out,   and    see    that    he 
is  well  provided  for  in 
all  respects.'     Thus,  it 
is  evident  that  you  are 
indebted    to    General 
Burgoyne  for  your  for- 
tunate escape  from  the 
horrors  of  a  prison."  baroness  rieuesel. 

Madam    R  i  e  d  e  s  e  1 
gives  us  some  ideas  of  the  journey  to  Cambridge 
from  the  standpoint  of  a  captive. 

"  As  it  was  already  very  late  in  the  season,  and  the  weather 
raw,  I  had  my  calash  covered  with  coarse  linen,  which  in 
turn  was  varnished  over  with  oil ;  and  in  this  manner  we  set 
out  on  our  journey  to  Boston,  which  was  very  tedious,  be- 
sides being  attended  with  considerable  hardship. 

"  I  know  not  whether  it  was  my  carriage  that  attracted 


the  curiosity  of  the  people  to  it, — for  it  certainly  had  the 
appearance  of  a  wagon  in  which  they  carry  around  rare  ani- 
mals,—  but  often  I  was  obliged  to  halt,  because  the  people 
insisted  upon  seeing  the  wife  of  the  German  general  with  her 
children.  For  fear  that  they  would  tear  off"  the  linen  cover- 
ing from  the  wagon  in  their  eagerness  to  see  me,  I  very 
often  alighted,  and  by  this  means  got  away  more  quickly." 

On  the  arrival  at  Cambridge,  Madam  Riedesel 
and  family  were  quartered  at  a  private  house, 
which  she  describes  as  follows  :  "  We  had  only 
one  room  under  the  roof.  My  women  servants 
slept  on  the  floor,  and  our  men  servants  in  the 
entry.  Some  straw,  which  I  placed  under  our 
beds,  served  us  for  a  long  time,  as  I  had  with 
me  nothing  more  than  my  own  field-bed." 

They  were  allowed  to  eat  in  the  room  where 
the  whole  family  ate  and  slept.  It  is  impossible 
to  imagine  the  feelings  of  the  baroness  when 
obliged  to  remain  in  such  quarters.  For  one  used 
to  ordinary  living  to  be  thus  located  it  would  be 
hard  indeed,  and  vastly  more  irksome  for  one 
accustomed  to  the  luxury  of  the  Riedesel  home. 

It  is  apparent  that  this  was  not  intentional  on 
the  part  of  the  Americans  in  charge,  for  after 
three  weeks  the  family  were  given  lodgings  in 
one  of  the  most  beautiful  houses  of  Cambridge. 
It  was  the  Lechmere  House,  one  of  the  seven 
on  "Tory  Row"  (Brattle  Street)  vacated  by  the 
Royalists.  It  is  yet  standing,  not  far  from  the  col- 
leges.   Both  house  and  grounds  are  so  changed  as 


to  be  scarcely  recognizable.  The  Colonial  style 
of  the  dwelling  is  utterly  destroyed,  and  many 
houses  now  stand  on  the  extensive  grounds  where 
richly  dressed  men  and  women  were  often  seen 
before  the  Revolution. 

These  noted  prisoners  enjoyed  themselves  in 
their  new  quarters,  and  were  in  full  sympathy 
with  the  owners  who  had  been  obliged  to  flee. 
They  complained  that  the  town  throughout  was 
full  of  ''violent  patriots"  and  ''wicked  people." 
They  decried  the  women,  who  they  claimed  showed 
them  the  greatest  indignity. 

The  kindness  of  General  Schuyler  prompted  the 
baroness  to  pay  a  visit  to  his  daughter  Madam  Car- 
ter, whose  attentions  she  fully  appreciated  ;  but 
complained  of  her  husband,  who,  she  said,  pro- 
posed to  the  Americans  "to  chop  off  the  heads 
of  our  generals,  salt  them  down  in  barrels,  and 
send  over  to  the  English  one  of  these  barrels  for 
every  hamlet  or  little  town  burned  down." 

After  the  abusive  measures  adopted  by  General 
Gage  in  this  locality,  it  seems  remarkable  that 
these  prisoners  should  have  been  treated  with  so 
much  lenience,  notwithstanding  the  terms  of  sur- 
render. It  was  quite  like  our  more  modern  way  of 
dealing  with  our  enemies.  The  family  held  balls 
and  parties,  and  even  went  so  far  as  to  celebrate 
the  birthday  of  the  king.  When  they  had  become 
quite  contented,  expecting  to  remain  in  this  place 
until  set  free,  there  came  an  order  for  a  chan2:e. 


Some  of  the  troops  were  sent  to  Rutland  in  the 
interior  of  the  State,  and  others  were  sent  to 
Virginia.  It  fell  to  the  lot  of  the  Riedesels  to  go 
to  Virginia. 

The  baroness  succeeded  in  secreting  the  Ger- 
man colors,  and  preventing  their  being  captured 
by  the  Americans,  who  were  led  by  her  to  believe 
that  they  were  burned  at  Saratoga,  which  was  not 
true,  the  staffs  only  being  destroyed,  while  the 
colors  were  secreted  in  a  mattress. 

A  daughter  born  to  the  family  in  New  York  in 
1780,  while  they  were  prisoners  of  war,  received 
the  name  of  America,  which  name  she  honorably 
bore  through  a  long  life  in  Germany. 

The  family  spent  nearly  seven  years  in  this 
country,  it  being  the  autumn  of  1783  before  they 
again  saw  their  Brunswick  home.  About  one- 
third  of  General  Riedesel's  army  either  perished 
or  voluntarily  remained  in  America. 

The  record  of  the  Riedesels  and  the  Hessians 
occupies  but  a  small  place  in  our  history,  and  is 
passed  with  but  little  notice,  save  as  it  comes  to 
us  occasionally  through  the  lips  of  one  who,  like 
John  Colburn  of  Hollis,  N.H.,  has  had  it  from  one 
of  the  patriots  who  faced  the  foes  "  who  killed  for 

The  poet  Longfellow,  who  became  the  owner  of 
the  house  which  was  the  headquarters  of  Wash- 
ington during  his  stay  at  Cambridge,  became  in- 
terested in  the  story  of  the  Riedesels,  whose  home 

"  THE    OPEN   WINDOW ''  I  57 

was  not  unlike  his  own,  and  has  remembered  them 
in  ''  The  Open  Window  :  "  — 

The  old  house  by  the  lindens 

Stood  silent  in  the  shade, 
And  on  the  gravelled  pathway 

The  light  and  shadow  played. 

I  saw  the  nursery  windows 

Wide  open  to  the  air  ; 
But  the  faces  of  the  children, 

They  were  no  longer  there. 

The  large  Newfoundland  house-dog 

Was  standing  by  the  door  ; 
He  looked  for  his  little  playmates, 

Who  would  return  no  more. 

They  walked  not  under  the  lindens, 

They  played  not  in  the  hall  ; 
But  shadow,   and  silence,  and  sadness 

Were  hanging  over  all. 

The  birds  sang  in  the  branches, 

With  sweet,  familiar  tone  ; 
But  the  voices  of  the  children 

Will  be  heard  in  dreams  alone ! 

And  the  boy  that  walked  beside  me, 

He  could  not  understand 
Why  closer  in  mine,  ah  !   closer, 

I  pressed  his  warm,  soft  hand ! 

Well  authenticated  history  and  tradition  prove 
that  Burgoyne  and  his  ofificers  were  shown  favors 
seldom  granted  to  prisoners  of  war.     While  the 



Brunswick  general  was  living  in  luxury  as  de- 
scribed, General  Burgoyne  received  the  distinction 
of  being  located  in  the  Apthorp  House,  vacated 
by  its  Loyalist  owner,  John  Borland,  who  gave  up 
his  beautiful  home,  rather  than  forsake  the  Crown 

Apthorp  House,  Cambridge,  where  Burgoyne  was  Imprisoned 

and  ally  himself  with  the  Colonists.  With  all  the 
softening  effect  of  time  and  circumstances,  one 
cannot  revert  to  the  vacated  estates  of  Brattle 
Street  without  arousing  the  most  profound  sym- 
pathy for  that  class  of  people  denominated  Tories, 
many  of  whom  had  great  possessions.  These 
they  sacrificed,  and  much  else  that  was  dear  to 
them,  rather   than    espouse    the    doubtful    cause. 


These  Loyalists  were  doubtless  as  conscientious 
in  their  course  as  were  their  neighbors,  the  pa- 
triots, in  their  struggle  for  liberty. 

The  Apthorp  House  is  one  of  the  notable  houses 
of  Cambridge  to-day.  It  is  a  well-preserved  spe- 
cimen of  the  Colonial  architecture,  surrounded  by 
ample  grounds,  but  which  have  been  greatly  shorn 
of  their  original  lawn.  In  the  mellow  sunlight  of 
an  October  afternoon,  by  the  courtesy  of  the  oc- 
cupant and  partial  owner,  I  thoughtfully  strolled 
about  that  yard,  over  the  turf  once  trod  by  the 
proud  general  whose  glory  had  departed.  I  re- 
called the  scene  when  the  general,  presuming 
upon  the  leniency  of  the  guard,  made  an  attempt 
to  overstep  his  limits,  and,  being  brought  to  a  halt, 
gave  free  expression  to  his  feelings  ;  so  says  the 
daughter  of  one  who  was  a  witness  to  the  scene. 
The  massive  door  of  the  mansion,  and  the  large 
hall  in  which  it  swings,  are  silent  reminders  of 
many  noted  guests  who  have  crossed  that  thresh- 
old. The  spacious  rooms  on  either  side,  where 
elaborate  carvings  have  withstood  the  vexing  hand 
of  modern  architects,  and  the  broad  staircase  with 
elegant  balustrade,  remind  one  of  not  only  the 
days  when  a  notable  prisoner  was  the  occupant,  but 
of  the  builder  and  his  successors  in  possession. 

This  interesting  mansion  is  familiar  to  all  who 
have  been  connected  with  Harvard  University  for 
more  than  a  century,  many  of  whom  have  dwelt 
beneath  its  roof.     It  was  built  about  1760  for  Rev. 


East  Apthorp,  the  first  rector  of  Christ  Church, 
Cambridge.  In  sentiment  and  manner  of  living, 
Dr.  Apthorp  may  be  classed  with  the  Vassal,  Lee, 
Inman,  Oliver,  Fhips,  Lechmere,  Brattle,  and  Tem- 
ple families,  who  were  instrumental  in  erecting 
the  church  edifice  and  establishing  the  mission. 
It  was  at  a  time  when  there  was  an  increasing 
opposition  to  the  element  of  aristocracy  in  the 
Colonies.  Being  censured  for  his  high  living, 
etc.,  Dr.  Apthorp  became  dissatisfied,  and  returned 
to  England,  after  advising  his  parishioners  to  give 
less  heed  to  "fashionable  imitation  and  parade  in 
buildings,  tables,  equipages,  etc." 

John  Borland  and  family,  belonging  to  the  se- 
lect circle  of  sympathizers,  were  occupants  of  the 
Apthorp  House  when  the  Revolutionary  troubles 
began.  They  were  classed  among  the  "absen- 
tees;" but  the  head  of  the  family  having  died 
while  in  Boston  in  1775,  the  property  was  not 
held  by  the  government,  and  the  heirs  succeeded 
to  the  ownership.  During  the  Borland  possession 
the  house  was  enlarged  by  adding  a  story  at  the 
top  for  the  use  of  the  negro  slaves  of  the  family, 
there  being  a  growing  sentiment  in  the  Bay  Col- 
ony against  the  practice  of  certain  New  York  fam- 
ilies, who  assigned  their  cellars  for  the  sleeping 
apartments  of  their  slaves.  Captain  Thomas  War- 
land  became,  through  purchase,  the  next  owner  of 
the  famous  house,  and  it  is  still  in  the  possession 
of  his  family. 



A  pair  of  brass  candlesticks,  a  part  of  the 
travelling  equipage  or  tent  ornaments  of  General 
Burgoyne,  were  presented  to  Lieutenant  Edmund 
Monroe  of  Lexington  by  a  superior  officer,  after 

SbiB^    j^^^^ 

Burgoyne's  Candlesticks 

the  surrender  of  the  northern  army.  These  are 
still  in  the  family,  owned  by  George  R.  Fessenden, 
M.D.,  of  Ashfield,  Mass.  They  are  made  so  as 
to  be  packed  in  a  compact  form,  and  carried  in  the 

Note.  — To  trace  the  route  taken  by  that  part  of  the  capitulated 
army  which  went  to  Cambridge,  the  reader  should  follow  it  from 
Saratoga  across  the  Hudson  to  Great  Barrington,  where  for  the  first 
time  they  found  shelter  in  barns.  There  they  halted  for  some 
time  in  order  to  secure  a  change  of  teams  for  the  conveyance  of 
baggage,  the  sick,  etc.  Then  they  went  on  to  Westfield  in  a  lazy 
and  shiftless  manner.  Two  of  the  Germans  perished  from  expo- 
sure before  reaching  West  Springfield,  where  they  crossed  the  Con- 
necticut River;  and  finding  the  people  of  East  Springfield  unwilling 
to  quarter  the  troops,  they  were  obliged  to  go  on  as  far  as  Palmer, 
thence  to  Brookfield,  where  the  Germans  overtook  their  English 
fellow-sufferers,  who  had  preceded  them  a  day's  journey.  From 
Brookfield  to  Leicester  was  a  march  of  eleven  days,  where  quarters 
for  the  weary  army  were  obtained.  On  November  4  they  reached 
Worcester,  and  obtained  "  deacent  quarters."     Generals  Burgoyne 


and  Phillips,  with  Brigadier  Glover,  were  there  at  the  same  time. 
The  next  day  found  them  at  Marlborough,  and  on  the  succeeding 
day  they  reached  Weston,  and  one  day  more  was  needed  to  com- 
plete the  journey  to  Cambridge,  November  7. 

One  need  not  study  very  intently  the  history  of  the  towns 
through  which  the  prisoners  passed,  to  find  that  the  patriots  on  the 
entire  route  took  pleasure  in  the  panoramic  scenes.  In  many  in- 
stances, however,  they  gave  relief  to  the  poor  bedraggled  creatures 
who  fell  out  by  the  way,  and  lay  down  to  die  in  a  strange  land. 

According  to  the  terms  of  capitulation,  the  army  was  to  have 
a  free  passage  to  England  under  Lieutenant-General  Burgoyne.  It 
was  to  march  to  Massachusetts  Bay  by  the  easiest  and  most  expedi- 
tious route,  and  be  quartered  as  near  as  possible  to  Boston.  The  offi- 
cers were  not  to  be  separated  from  their  men ;  but  they  were  to  be 
quartered  according  to  rank,  and  not  to  be  hindered  from  assembling 
their  men  for  roll-call  and  the  necessary  purposes  of  regularity. 
They  were  to  be  allowed  the  privilege  of  parole,  and  to  wear  their 
side-arms.  The  terms  of  agreement  signed  by  Gates  in  behalf  of 
the  Colonies,  and  Burgoyne  on  the  part  of  the  English  Government, 
were  not  fully  carried  out,  failing  to  be  indorsed  by  the  Continen- 
tal Congress. 

In  times  of  peace  it  is  hardly  fair  to  impugn  the  motives  of  the 
faithful  leaders  in  times  of  war;  but  they  were  charged  with  de- 
taining the  troops  for  the  purpose  of  having  them  desert,  and  join 
the  American  army. 





Early  in  1776,  when  General  Gage  found  he 
could  not  have  his  own  way,  and  Burgoyne  had 
learned  that  he  must  fight  to  have  "  elbow  room," 
Eno:land  entered  into  treaties  with  the  smaller 
German  states  to  take  into  her  service  twenty 
thousand  German  troops.  The  landgrave  of  Hesse- 
Cassel  furnished  the  larger  share,  and  hence  all 
the  Germans  received  the  appellation  "Hessians." 

The  custom  followed  by  the  ruler  of  this  Ger- 
man province  of  hiring  out  Hessian  soldiers  was 
one  of  long  standing,  and  one  which  aided  the 
finances  not  a  little,  and  sometimes  led  to  the  for- 
mation of  important  alliances  on  the  part  of  the 
reisrnino:  House.  It  is  recorded  that  the  British 
Government  paid.  ^3,000,000  for  the  services  of 
the  army  of  Hessians  who  fought  against  our 
patriotic  ancestors  in  the  Revolution.  Of  these, 
four  thousand  were  Brunswickers,  natives  of  the 
province  of  Brunswick. 


While  I  will  not  run  the  risk  of  confusing  my 
readers  by  departing  from  the  appellation  Hes- 
sians, I  desire  to  have  it  apparent  that  the  Ger- 
man allies  of  the  king  were  of  different  classes, 
and  not  all  of  the  grade  which  we  have  sometimes 
contemptuously  regarded  them,  although  none  of 
them  had  any  honorable  motive  for  taking  up  arms 
against  the  Provincials. 

The  Brunswick  army  was  placed  under  the  com- 
mand of  Major-General  Riedesel,  a  man  of  literary 
culture  and  refinement,  as  well  as  of  military  dis- 
tinction ;  and  the  only  wonder  is  that  he  could  be 
hired  to  lead  an  army  to  come  to  America  "  to 
butcher  her  children." 

If  my  reader  would  follow  the  course  taken  by 
this  general  and  his  German  army  from  their 
starting-point  to  America,  let  him  turn  to  the  map 
of  the  German  Empire,  and  find  near  the  centre 
the  province  of  Brunswick,  from  which  their  start 
was  made.  They  marched  across  the  province  of 
Hanover  to  Stadc,  a  fortified  town  about  a  mile 
from  the  mouth  of  the  Schwinge  in  the  Elbe, 
where  they  began  their  journey  by  water.  "The 
departure  of  the  boats  was  one  of  the  most  beauti- 
ful spectacles  that  can  be  imagined.  All  was  con- 
tentment and  happiness."  The  boat  which  carried 
General  Riedesel  was  the  Pallas,  the  same  which 
conveyed  General  Gage  from  America  to  England. 
The  first  day's  journey  was  past  beautiful  villages, 
plainly  seen  from  the  boat  on  either  side  of  the 

THE    GERMAh'  ALLIES  1 65 

Elbe,  to  Fryburg,  and  then  they  were  soon  out  to 
sea.  Touching  at  Dover,  they  passed  through  the 
Strait  to  the  English  Channel,  halting  at  Ports- 
mouth, and  passing  on  to  Plymouth,  which  they 
left  on  April  4  for  America.  The  fleet,  upon 
leaving  the  coast  of  Iingland,  numbered  thirty-six 
sailing-vessels.  After  a  passage  of  nine  weeks, 
they  arrived  at  Quebec,  where  the  general  saw 
some  of  our  men  who  had  been  captured,  ''  Rebel 
prisoners,"  he  called  them.  From  Quebec  they 
went  to  Three  Rivers,  from  which  place  the  gen- 
eral wrote  to  his  wife  :  "  We  have  already  con- 
quered the  whole  of  Canada,  and  shall,  as  soon  as 
the  boats  are  in  readiness,  force  our  way  into  New 
England  by  the  way  of  Lake  Champlain,  where 
are  all  the  rebels."  After  taking  Crown  Point 
they  went  into  winter  quarters  in  and  near  Three 
Rivers.  Here  they  remained  in  the  full  enjoy- 
ment of  good  living,  after  a  time  of  illness  occa- 
sioned by  the  change  in  climate.  The  anticipation 
of  a  complete  subjugation  of  the  patriot  army  in 
the  spring  added  to  their  winter's  enjoyment.  In 
May  they  were  made  doubly  sure  of  success  by 
the  arrival  of  General  John  Burgoyne,  with  a 
picked  army,  great  stores  of  ammunition,  and  the 
finest  brass  cannon  yet  sent  over.  Good  plans 
were  made,  but  the  trouble  came  in  carrying  them 

At  first  they  were  successful  ;  and  General  Rie- 
desel  began  to  win  laurels  for  himself  and  his  army, 


and  Burgoyne  thought  the  way  was  clear  before 
him.  They  repulsed  Seth  Warner  and  his  ''Green 
Mountain  Boys  "  at  Hubbardston,  Vermont,  cap- 
tured Ticonderoga  and  the  stores  at  Whitehall. 
But  at  length  the  Germans  marched  on  to  Ben- 
nington, where  General  Stark  had  put  in  an  ap- 
pearance with  some  New  Hampshire  militia.  It 
was  their  appearance  that  called  forth  that  oft- 
repeated  remark,  ''There  they  are,  boys.  We 
shall  beat  them  to-night,  or  to-morrow  morning 
Molly  Stark  will  be  a  widow."  ^  They  did  defeat 
them,  and  captured  some  brass  cannon,  which 
they  could  not  turn  to  a  good  use  until  General 
Stark  showed  them  how  to  do  it. 

There  soon  followed  the  conditions  and  expe- 
riences which  Mr.  Colburn  described  to  me,  and 
which  have  been  already  recorded  in  a  previous 

The  reader  recalls  the  statement  of  Mr.  Col- 
burn, and  wonders  how  the  family  of  the  Bruns- 
wick general  came  to  be  with  him  at  the  surrender 
of  October  17.  Surprising  as  it  may  seem,  it  was 
quite  the  habit  of  these  German  soldiers  to  have 

1   "The  morning  came  —  there  stood  the  foe; 
Stark  eyed  them  as  they  stood; 
Few  words  he  spake  —  'twas  not  a  time 
For  moralizing  mood; 
*  See  there,  the  enemy,  my  boys  — 
Now,  strong  in  valor's  might, 
Beat  them,  or  Betty  Stark  will  sleep 
In  widowhood  to-night!  '  " 

WOMEN  IN   THE   ARMY  1 6/ 

their  wives  along  with  them.  About  fourscore 
women  left  their  homes,  and  made  the  journey  to 
America  with  the  army  to  which  their  husbands 
belonged.  The  peasant  women  were  contented  to 
do  the  drudgery  of  the  camp,  and  live  in  a  most 
diso-ustins:  manner„  It  was  in  accordance  with 
this  custom  that  the  family  of  General  Riedesel 
was  with  him  at  Saratoga  ;  but  their  manner  of 
journeying  and  living  was  in  the  greatest  contrast 
to  that  of  the  peasants. 

The  Baroness  Riedesel  was  equally  as  cultured 
and  refined  as  her  husband  the  general.  She  be- 
longed to  a  distinguished  family,  and  from  youth 
was  accustomed  to  the  most  cultivated  society  of 
her  country.  Although  surrounded  with  all  that 
wealth  and  station  could  provide,  the  baroness 
would  have  accompanied  her  husband  to  America 
had  circumstances  permitted.  At  her  earliest  op- 
portunity. May  4,  she  set  out  on  her  journey  to 
meet  him.  She  took  with  her  three  daughters, 
Gustava,  Frederica,  and  Caroline,  aged  four  years 
and  nine  months,  two  years,  and  ten  weeks,  re- 
spectively. She  was  accompanied  by  a  retinue  of 
servants  of  both  sexes,  which  her  wealth  and  posi- 
tion warranted.  They  made  the  journey  overland 
in  a  coach  to  Calais,  where  they  took  a  ship  for 
England,  landed  at  Dover,  and  were  conveyed  to 
London  by  coach.  They  arrived  in  London  on 
June  I,  and  she  immediately  received  the  courtesy 
from   Lord  North  which  her  position  demanded. 


After  a  few  days  she  went  to  Bristol,  where  she 
met  a  Captain  Fenton,  whose  wife  and  a  daughter 
of  fourteen  years  were  held  as  prisoners  in  Boston, 
New  England.  The  baroness  spent  months  in 
making  preparations  for  her  ocean  voyage,  during 
which  time  she  appeared  at  Court,  and  was  pre- 
sented to  King  George  IIL  and  his  wife  on  New 
Year's  Day,  1777. 

The  baroness  thus  describes  her  experience  at 
the  Court  of.  England,  — 

''  I  found  the  castle  very  ugly,  and  furnished  in 
old-fashioned  style.  Ail  the  ladies  and  gentlemen 
were  stationed  in  the  audience-room.  Into  this 
room  came  the  king,  preceded  by  three  cavaliers. 
The  queen  followed  him,  accompanied  by  a  lady 
who  carried  her  train,  and  a  chamberlain.  The 
king  went  round  to  the  right,  and  the  queen  to 
the  left.  Neither  passed  by  any  one  without  say- 
ing something.  At  the  end  of  the  drawing- 
room  they  met,  made  each  other  a  profound  bow, 
and  then  returned  to  the  place  whence  they  had 
started.  I  asked  Lady  Germaine  how  I  should 
act,  and  whether  the  king,  as  I  had  heard,  kissed 
all  the  ladies.  '  No,'  she  replied,  '  only  English 
women  and  marchionesses  ;  '  and  that  all  one  had 
to  do  was  to  remain  quietly  standing  in  her  place. 
When,  therefore,  the  king  came  up  and  kissed  me, 
I  was  greatly  amazed,  and  turned  red  as  fire,  since 
it  was  so  entirely  unexpected." 

The  remarks  of  the  kino^  showed  that  he  was 


familiar  with  the  enterprise  of  General  Rieclescl, 
and  of  the  intended  journey  of  the  baroness. 

She  left  Portsmouth  for  America,  with  her  chil- 
dren and  servants,  on  April  15,  1777,  and  arrived 
in  the  harbor  of  Quebec  on  the  nth  of  June. 
There  was  a  booming  of  guns  from  all  the  ships 
in  the  harbor,  firing  a  salute  in  honor  of  her 
arrival,  before  she  realized  what  it  all  meant. 
Presently  a  boat  approached  the  ship  to  carry 
them  ashore.  The  boat  was  manned  by  twelve 
sailors  dressed  in  white,  with  silver  helmets  and 
green  sashes.  With  the  boat  came  letters  from 
General  Reidesel,  informing  his  wife  that  he  had 
been  unable  to  await  her  arrival  at  Quebec,  and 
had  started  on  the  summer  campaign  with  Gen- 
eral Burgoyne.  Only  remaining  long  enough  at 
Quebec  to  dine  with  the  wife  of  General  Carleton, 
the  baroness  with  her  family  took  a  boat,  and  pro- 
ceeded up  the  St.  Lawrence,  in  the  hope  of  over- 
taking her  husband.  At  midnight  they  landed, 
and  took  calashes  for  a  drive  across  the  country, 
riding  in  this  way  till  the  following  afternoon, 
when  they  crossed  the  river,  and  reached  the  vil- 
lage of  Three  Rivers.  Here  the  Hessians  had 
been  in  winter  quarters,  and  General  Reidesel 
had  left  a  house  prepared  for  the  reception  of 
his  family. 

The  Grand  Vicar  of  the  villasre,  seeino:  the 
baroness's  anxiety  to  join  her  husband,  loaned 
her  a  covered  calash,  in  which  she   immediately 


resumed  her  journey  in  pursuit  of  the  advancing 
army.  And  in  ■  this  manner  this  refined  lady 
and  her  three  young  children  and  servants  were 
driven  over  the  rough  roads  of  the  country. 

"  How  touching  a  picture  is  this  !  A  delicate, 
refined  woman,  accustomed  only  to  the  comfort, 
luxury,  and  shelter  of  an  old  civilization  in  a  circle 
of  devoted  relations  and  friends,  encountering  the 
hardships  of  the  wilderness,  self-reliant,  coura- 
geous, persevering,  not  for  one  moment  forget- 
ting or  neglecting  the  babes  who  are  dependent 
on  her  tenderness,  even  while  her  whole  soul  is 
absorbed  in  that  intensity  of  wifely  love  and  devo- 
tion that  renders  her  regardless  of  fatigue,  pain, 
and  repeated  disappointment.  If  we  are  moved 
with  enthusiasm  in  recalling  the  valor  and  self- 
forgetfulness  of  the  patriot  in  the  service  of  his 
country  on  the  wearying  march  and  amid  the 
carnage  of  the  field,  may  we  not  be  equally  stirred 
at  a  manifestation  of  heroic  endurance  and  self- 
abnegation  in  an  exercise  of  the  most  sublime  of 
human  emotions,  even  though  it  be  on  the  part  of 
one  who  sympathizes  with  the  enemy  t  " 

After  meeting  General  Riedesel,  and  spending 
a  few  days,  it  became  necessary  for  her  to  return 
to  Three  Rivers  with  the  children.  They  spent 
some  weeks  at  the  village  of  Three  Rivers.  In 
the  meantime  the  British  and  German  forces  had 
met  with  their  successes  at  Ticonderoga  and  else- 
where.     Major   Ackland    had    been   wounded   at 


Hubbardston  in  the  encounter  with  the  ''  Green 
Mountain  Boys,"  and  his  wife  had  been  allowed 
to  join  him. 

This  permission  led  General  Burgoyne  to  turn 
to  General  Riedesel  and  say,  — 

"  Your  wife  shall  come  too,  General  ;  despatch 
Captain  Willoe  to  escort  her  at  once." 

They  left  Three  Rivers  in  a  boat ;  and  after 
some  strange  experiences  with  rattlesnakes  when 
landing  on  a  small  island,  and  the  enjoyment  of 
much  charming  scenery,  they  reached  Fort  Ed- 
ward, where  they  were  most  gladly  received  .by 
General  Riedesel,  and  warmly  welcomed  by  the 
commanding  officers. 

They  spent  three  happy  weeks,  a  reunited 
family,  in  the  Red  House,  encircled  by  the  Brit- 
ish and  German  troops. 

"  The  weather  was  beautiful,"  said  the  baroness, 
*'  and  we  often  took  our  meals  under  the  trees." 

On  the  nth  of  September  the  army  moved 
forward  ;  and  the  little  family  followed  them  until 
the  battle  of  the  19th,  when  the  baroness  and 
her  family  were  obliged  to  remain  at  one  place, 
meeting  the  husband  and  father  as  often  as  cir- 
cumstances permitted.  At  length  a  house  was 
prepared  for  the  family  near  the  camp  ;  and  when 
she  was  to  move  into  it,  an  unexpected  change 
took  place.  Said  the  baroness,  "On  my  way  home- 
ward, I  met  many  savages  in  their  war  dress 
armed  with  guns.     They  cried  out,   'War!  War!' 


This  completely  overwhelmed  me ;  and  I  had 
scarcely  got  back  to  my  quarters,  when  I  heard 
skirmishing  and  firing,  which  by  degrees  became 
constantly  heavier,  until  finally  the  noises  were 
frightful."  The  baroness  was  expecting  to  have 
a  dinner-party  that  afternoon,  at  which  the  gen- 
erals were  to  be  guests  ;  but  instead,  of  the  party, 
she  was  called  upon  to  care  for  one  of  them.  Gen- 
eral Frazer,  who  was  mortally  wounded,  and  died 
soon  after.  The  burial  of  General  Frazer,  alluded 
to  by  my  aged  friend  Mr.  Colburn,  is  here  de- 
scribed by  the  Baroness  Riedesel,  as  she  saw  it 
from  the  standpoint  of  the  enemy,  whose  leader 
he  was.  ''  Many  cannon-balls  also  flew  not  far 
from  me  ;  but  I  had  my  eyes  fixed  upon  the  hill, 
where  I  distinctly  saw  my  husband  in  the  midst 
of  the  enemy's  fire.  The  clergyman  who  was  offi- 
ciating was  frequently  covered  with  dust,  which  the 
shot  threw  up  on  all  sides  of  him."  Immediately 
after  the  funeral  a  retreat  was  ordered.  Madam 
Riedesel,  with  children  and  servants,  travelled  all 
night  in  the  pouring  rain,  and  camped  at  Old  Sar- 
atoga. The  greatest  consternation  prevailed  in 
the  army ;  the  provisions  had  failed,  and  the  lead- 
ing officers  were  forced  from  hunger  to  beg  for  a 
morsel  from  the  baroness.  Soon  the  cannonading 
drove  them  on,  and  the  family  sought  refuge  in  a 
house.  They  were  detected  in  entering  the  house 
by  some  of  the  Americans,  who  fired  at  them,  and 
believino:  that  the  house  was  filled  with  officers, 


continued  a  heavy  fire.  Madam  Riedesel  and  her 
children  escaped  by  hiding  in  the  cellar,  where 
they  sat  upon  the  floor  through  the  entire  night, 
while  cannon-balls  crashed  through  the  walls  above 
them.  Surrounded  by  the  dead  and  dying,  in 
hourly  expectation  of  attack,  this  heroic  woman 
cared  for  her  children  when  servants  failed,  and 
also  acted  the  part  of  a  nurse  to  the  suffering 
about  her.  After  nearly  a  week  of  this  extremity, 
the  surrender  came,  and  the  entire  army  were  pris- 
oners of  the  Americans. 

After  the  generals  of  the  conquered  army  had 
been  received  by  General  Gates,  and  the  formali- 
ties of  surrender  had  taken  place,  a  messenger 
was  sent  to  the  baroness,  asking  her  to  join  her 
husband,  who  was  a  prisoner  in  the  American 
camp.  She  was  met  by  General  Philip  Schuyler 
and  General  Gates,  and  also  Generals  Phillips  and 
Burgoyne  of  the  surrendered  army.  General 
Schuyler  then  took  the  baroness  and  her  children 
to  his  own  tent,  where  he  showed  them  much 
hospitality,  and  later  sent  them  to  his  home  in 
Albany,  where  they  remained  three  days,  when 
the  baroness  and  her  children  left  to  join  the 
General  in  the  trials  of  the  long  captivity.  They 
journeyed  with  the  captured  army  to  Cambridge, 
Mass.  This  beautiful  lady,  so  recently  a  guest  of 
the  King  of  England,  and  during  her  entire  life 
in  Germany  surrounded  by  luxury,  was  now  prac- 
tically a  prisoner  of  war. 


It  was  in  this  condition  that  the  Hollis  soldier 
saw  the  family  of  the  Brunswick  general.  The 
station  and  wealth  of  the  baroness  prevented  her 
falling  into  the  condition  of  the  ordinary  women 
who  followed  the  army,  yet  she  was  subjected  to 
many  trials  that  she  little  anticipated  when  leaving 
her  home  at  Brunswick. 

The  Baroness  Riedesel  had  the  society  of  Lady 
Harriet  Ackland  during  a  portion  of  her  camp-life 
in  America.  She  had  left  her  home  of  luxury  in 
England,  and  accompanied  her  husband.  Major 
Ackland,  who  was  in  command  of  the  Grenadiers  ; 
but  the  English  officer  was  captured  before  the 
Saratoga  Convention,  hence  the  two  ladies  were 
not  companions  in  the  prison-life  in  Massachu- 
setts and  Virginia. 

The  whole  number  of  prisoners  was  5,791.  Of 
these  2,412  were  Germans  and  Hessians.  The  mu- 
nitions captured  consisted  of  4,647  muskets,  6,000 
dozen  cartridges,  etc.  Among  the  English  pris- 
oners were  six  members  of  parliament.  The 
journey  of  three  hundred  miles  was  long  and 
wearisome.  There  was  nothing  to  inspire  the 
march.  On  the  contrary,  it  was  prison-life  for 
all  but  the  officers,  who  had  special  privileges,  ac- 
cording to  the  agreement  between  Burgoyne  and 
Gates  at  the  surrender. 







LUCY  LARCOm's  poem,  "  A  GAMBREL  ROOF." THE 

ROES   KILLED   AT    MENOTOMY,  APRIL    I9,    1775-  


My  Stroll  about  Danvers  in  quest  of  hearth- 
stones on  which  glow  the  embers  of  Revolutionary 
days  was  most  abundantly  rewarded.  In  fact,  I 
found  many  homes  in  this  locality  where  the 
family  possession  has  not  been  broken  from  the 
early  days  of  the  Colonial  period  of  our  history. 
Essex  County  is  remarkably  favored  in  this  partic- 
ular. The  name  of  Governor  Endicott  calls  our 
attention  to  the  very  beginning  of  the  settlement 
of  Salem,  and  the  origin  of  the  Colony  of  Massa- 
chusetts Bay  in  1628.  Danvers  was  formerly 
known  as  Salem  Village,  and  includes  the  Endi- 
cott grant. 

Wisely  directed,  I  made  my  way  to  the  Page 
house  in  the  centre  of  Danvers.     So  well  kept  is 



this  home  of  the  Page  family  that  I  at  first 
thought  I  must  have  mistaken  the  direction  ;  but 
a  glance  upward  revealed  the  old-fashioned  gambrel 
roof,  so  pleasantly  described  by  Miss  Lucy  Lar- 
com,  and  I  was  fully  assured  that  I  had  reached 
the  desired  house.     I  was  at  once  given  a  welcome 

Colonel  Jeremiah  Page  Home,  Danvers 

by  Miss  Annie  L.  Page,  the  present  owner  and 
occupant,  and  by  her  supplied  with  the  unques- 
tionable data  to  which  I  now  invite  the  attention 
of  my  readers. 

''This  house  was  built  by  my  grandfather,  Colo- 
nel Jeremiah  Page,  about  the  year  1750,  and  has 
always  been  in  our  family  possession.  Here  my 
grandparents  spent  the  greater  part  of  their  lives  ; 


my  father,  John  Page,  was  born  here  ;  and  it  is 
still  my  home.  To  be  sure,  there  have  been  some 
alterations  and  additions  from  time  to  time;  but 
the  same  roof-tree  has  sheltered  the  three  genera- 
tions, and  we  have  sat  by  the  same  hearth-stone. 
The  beautiful  spreading  elms  in  front  of  the  house 
were  planted  by  Jeremiah  Page  about  one  hun- 
dred and  fifty  years  ago.  Scores  of  his  descendants 
have  enjoyed  their  gracious  shade,  and  been  led  to 
believe  with  Emerson,  '  God's  greatest  thought  in 
nature  is  a  tree.'  "  Jeremiah  Page,  the  builder  of 
this  well-kept  house,  was  the  pioneer  of  brick- 
making  in  Danvers.  He  was  born  in  Medford  in 
1722,  and  when  about  twenty-one  years  of  age  was 
invited  by  Mr.  Daniel  Andrews  to  work  the  clay- 
pits  of  Danvers.  In  this  way  he  began  the  man- 
ufacture of  bricks,  which  he  continued  to  the  close 
of  his  life  in  1806. 

Among  his  large  contracts  was  that  of  supply- 
ing the  bricks  for  Fort  William  at  Salem,  in  1794. 
The  young  brickmaker  married  the  only  daughter 
of  Mr.  Andrews,  who  is  the  heroine  of  the  tea- 
party  represented  in  *' A  Gambrel  Roof."  Here 
Jeremiah  Page  and  Sarah  Andrews  began  their 
married  life,  and  for  a  century  and  a  half  the 
Pages  have  made  a  record  most  creditable  to  the 

Jeremiah  Page  early  in  life  acted  the  part  of 
a  patriot,  and  possessing  peculiar  qualifications 
for  leadership  was  put  in  military  authority  in  the 


Province.  He  was  commissioned  as  captain  of 
the  militia  in  the  year  1773.  This  was  when  the 
rumblings  of  the  Revolution  were  all  about  them, 
and  it  required  decision  of  character  to  fulfil  the 
duties  of  the  office.  April  27,  1774,  he  was  or- 
dered to  take  his  company  to  Trask's  Hill  in 
Salem  for  military  exercise.  Up  to  this  time  the 
majority  of  the  commissioned  officers  of  the  first 
Essex  regiment  were  in  sympathy  with  the  gov- 
ernment. Among  these  Colonel  William  Brown, 
a  member  of  the  Council  Board,  refused  to  resign 
in  accordance  with  request,  and  so  the  subordi- 
nate officers  withdrew.  Then  was  held  a  meeting 
of  the  members  of  the  Alarm  and  Training  Bands 
of  the  third  company  of  Danvers,  when  Jeremiah 
Page  was  chosen  as  captain.  This  act  was  in- 
dorsed by  a  pouplar  vote,  despite  the  order  from 
the  government  officials. 

It  was  at  this  time  that  the  new  governor  and 
Captain-general,  Thomas  Gage,  made  his  appear- 
ance in  the  Province  of  Massachusetts  Bay,  and 
early  announced  to  the  Council  and  gentlemen  of 
the  House  of  Representatives  that  after  the  first 
of  June  the  seat  of  government  would  be  trans- 
ferred to  Salem  ;  and  consequently,  on  May  28, 
he  adjourned  them  to  meet  there  on  June  7.  This 
order  was  in  anticipation  of  the  closing  of  the 
port  of  Boston  on  June  i.  It  was  necessary  that 
the  king's  agent  should  be  near  the  seat  of  gov- 
ernment, and  the  demonstration  in  Boston  on  the 



first  day  of  the  enforcement  of  the  Port  Bill  may 
have  hastened  his  removal.  On  the  following 
day  the  royal  governor  was  driven  to  Danvers,  and 
here  established  his  official  residence.  To  be 
located  a  little  distance  out  in  the  country  was 
the  custom  with  the  officers,  and  Danvers  at  the 

GovKRXoR  r;A(iE".s  Office 

beginning  of  June  offered  great  natural  attrac- 
tions. Then,  too,  it  was  the  residence  of  Dr. 
Samuel  Holton,  one  of  the  Council.  But  the 
country  home,  with  its  attractions,  was  too  far 
out  ;  and  the  royal  governor  applied  to  Jeremiah 
Page  for  a  room  in  his  house  to  serve  him  as  an 
office.  Having  taken  up  his  abode  in  the  town 
in    a    perfectly  peaceable    manner,  this   privilege 


was  not  denied  him,  and  the  south  front  room 
was  set  off  to  his  use. 

Miss  Page  told  me  that  her  father  had  often  from 
the  windows  of  this  room  enjoyed  looking  at  the 
harbor  filled  with  sail,  and  this  view  may  have  influ- 
enced the  governor  in  the  selection  of  his  office. 

The  room,  with  its  present  attractions,  is  a  vivid 
reminder  of  the  summer  of  1774,  when  the  last 
English  governor  who  served  the  country  trans- 
acted the  king's  business  and  smoked  his  pipe 
within  its  walls.  As  this  dignified  tenant  sat  in 
his  office  with  sympathizing  officials,  he  had  little 
thought  that  his  landlord  was  dividing  the  time 
between  his  brick-yard  and  the  patriot  cause  ;  for 
even  then  Captain  Page  was  attending  secret 
meetings  with  other  patriots,  where  there  was 
plotting  against  the  king  and  Parliament. 

To  one  accustomed  to  hear  nothing  but  evil  of 
the  king's  troops  while  quartered  in  and  about 
Boston,  it  is  a  relief  to  gather  from  the  lips  of 
Danvers  people  some  of  their  ancestors'  personal 
experiences  with  the  soldiers  while  quartered  in 
the  town  and  loitering  about  the  highways.  *'The 
conduct  of  the  royal  troops  is  said  to  have  been 
very  exemplary  ;  and  grandfather  enjoyed  the  com- 
pany of  Governor  Gage,  although  he  was  not' in 
sympathy  with  him  or  the  cause  which  he  was 
here  to  maintain."  Another  family  report,  per- 
haps somewhat  biassed,  is,  **The  governor  was  as 
pretty  a  man  in  the  house  as  I  ever  saw." 


Mrs.  Fowler,  a  daughter  of  Archelaus  Putnam 
of  Danversport,  added  her  testimony,  which  is 
kept  as  a  family  tradition. 

''In  September,  1774,  I  was  in  an  orchard 
gathering  apples  when  on  looking  up,  I  saw  two 
English  officers,  one  of  whom  commenced  climb- 
ing over  the  fence.  The  other,  seeing  that  I  was 
alarmed,  said  to  him,  '  Wait  till  the  girl  goes 
away  ;  do  not  frighten  her  by  entering  the  or- 
chard yet.'  " 

A  thrifty  farmer  whom  I  chanced  to  meet  and 
engage  in  conversation  when  driving  his  stock  of 
cows  to  the  barn,  said,  "  Yes,  them  soldiers  used 
to  relieve  our  folks  of  the  trouble  of  milking  the 
cows,  though  unfortunately  for  the  owners,  they 
appropriated  the  milk  to  their  own  use  ;  but  no 
one  could  wonder  at  it.  Here  they  were  loafing 
about  with  little  or  nothing  to  do.  I  wonder  they 
didn't  do  a  good  many  more  tricks." 

Seven  of  these  British  soldiers  died  while  en- 
camped here,  from  July  21  to  September  5  ;  and 
their  unmarked  graves  are  still  pointed  out  in  a 
field  on  the  south  side  of  Sylvan  Street.  Perhaps 
they  thus  escaped  a  more  bloody  death  on  the 
following   19th  of  April. 

It  has  been  thought  that  Governor  Gage  pro- 
vided either  a  whole  or  part  of  the  furnishings  of 
this  room  to  suit  his  own  liking,  and  that  in  his 
somewhat  hasty  departure  he  failed  to  take  his 
chairs,  which   remained   in   the  house  for  a  long 



time,  and  were  known  as  "  Governor  Gage's  chairs." 
They  had  green  flag  seats,  and,  being  but  little 
prized,  were  sold  at  auction  after  the  death  of 
Captain  Page. 

Curiosity  prompted  me  to  ask  this  member  of 
the  Page  family  for  the  authenticity  of  the  tea- 
party  story,  to  which  the  genial  lady  replied,  ''  It 

Page  Garret,  Danvers 

was  on  my  grandfather's  return  from  one  of  the 
meetings  with  his  patriot  friends  that  he  told 
grandmother  he  had  promised  to  have  no  more  tea 
used  in  his  house,  and  that  she  must  not  have  any 
made.  One  day  soon  after,  when  he  was  away 
from  home,  two  friends  came  in  to  spend  the  after- 
noon, as  was  the  good  old  custom.  The  tempta- 
tion, with  plenty  of  tea  in  the  house,  was  too  great. 

THE    TEA-PARTY  1 83 

Grandmother  told  her  visitors  what  2:randfather 
had  commanded;  but  as  he  had  said  in  and  not 
upon  the  house,  she  thought  they  could  enjoy 
this  tea  without  disobeying  him,  and  they  slyly 
went  up  and  enjoyed  some  on  the  roof." 

This  little  ruse,  so  cunningly  executed  by  Mrs. 
Page,  was  lost  to  the  family  by  the  death  of  the 
good  woman,  which  occurred  within  a  year  before 
it  was  prudent  to  reveal  any  secrets  of  this  nature. 
''  It  is  apparent  that  grandmother  was  the  only 
member  of  the  family  who  had  a  part  in  the  tea- 
drinking,  and  it  was  many  years  before  the  secret 
was  revealed  which  furnished  the  impulse  for 
writing  the  well-known  centennial  poem." 

"  A    GAMBREL    ROOF,       AND    HOW    THE    SECRET    WAS 

*' It  was  some  time  between  the  years  1845  and 
'50  that  a  friend  of  my  mother  came  to  make  her 
a  visit.  She  had  recently  come  to  Danvers  to 
live,  and  had  never  been  in  our  house  before. 
She  begged  to  go  up  on  the  roof,  and  see  the 
place  of  the  secret  tea-drinking,  which  we  now 
heard  of  for  the  first  time.  Her  mother  was  one 
of  the  tea-drinkers,  and  she  had  often  heard  her 
tell  the  experience.  The  return  to  Danvers  had 
recalled  the  incident  to  her  mind,  in  which  we 
were  very  much  interested.  I  told  the  story  to 
Miss   Larcom,  who  often  visited  us,  and  in    1875, 


when  the  centennial  anniversaries  were  noticed 
as  they  came  around,  she  wrote  a  poem  upon  the 
tea-drinking,  of  course  making  liberal  use  of  po- 
etic license." 

It  seems  that  afternoon  teas  were  then  in  or- 
der ;  and  Mrs.  Page  is  represented  as  remonstrat- 
ing against  the  decree  of  her  husband,  saying,  — 

"  '  I've   asked  a  friend  or   two  to  sup, 
And  not  to  offer  them  a  cup 
Would  be  a  sting'y  shame.'  " 

To  which  Captain  Page  replies,  — 

"  '  Wife,  I  have  promised,  so  must  you, 
None  shall  drink  tea  inside  my  house. 
Your  gossip   elsewhere  must   carouse.'  " 

The  lady  courtesied  low,  — 

"  '  Husband,  your  word  is  law,'  she  said, 
But  archly  turned  her  well-set  head 
With  roguish  poise  toward  this  old  roof, 
Soon  as  she  heard  his  martial  hoof 
Along  the  highway  go." 

The  poem  then  goes  on  with  a  description  of 
preparations  for  the  tea-party,  the  arrival  of  guests, 
and  the  ascent  to  the  novel  place  selected  for  the 
meal.  Having  reached  the  elevation,  Mrs.  Page 
remarks,  — 

"  '  A  goodly  prospect,  as  I  said, 

You  here  may  see  before  you  spread. 
Upon  a  house  is  not  luithiii  it; 
But  now  we  must  not  waste  a  minute, 
Neighbors,  sit  down  to  tea.' 

COLONEL   FACE    OiV  AI'KIL    10,    1775  1 85 

How  madam  then  her  ruse  explained, 
What  mirth  arose  as  sunset  waned 
In  the  close  covert  of  these  trees 
No  leaf  told  the  reporter  breeze  ; 

But  when  the  twilight  fell, 
And  hoof-beats  rang  down  Salem  road. 
And  up  the  yard  the  colonel  strode, 
No  soul  besides  the  dame  and  Dill 
Stirred  in  the  mansion  dim  and  still. 

The  game  was  played  out  well. 
Let  whoso  chooses  settle  blame 
Betwixt  the  colonel  and  his  dame 
Or  dame  and  country.     That  the  view 
Is  from  the  house-top  fine,   is  true." 

It  was  while  sitting  by  the  hearth-stone  in  Colo- 
nel Page's  large  armchair,  where  Governor  Gage 
was  wont  to  sit  in  meditation,  and  where  his  op- 
ponents also  sat,  with  the  shadow  of  the  second 
generation  upon  the  wall,  that  I  heard  from  the 
lips  of  the  third  generation  the  story  of  the 
family's  experience  on  the  19th  of  April,  1775,  — 

*'  On  the  receipt  of  the  alarm  my  grandfather 
made  haste  to  rally  his  men,  and  they  were  early 
on  the  road  to  intercept  the  enemy.  His  com- 
pany was  one  of  three  of  Danvers  militia  belong- 
ing to  the  Essex  Regiment,  under  the  superior 
command  of  Colonel  Timothy  Pickering  of  Salem. 
There  were  in  grandfather's  company  thirty-seven 
officers  and  men.  In  obedience  to  the  orders  of 
a  superior  officer,  grandfather  and  a  part  of  his 
men  were  not  in  the  thickest  of  the  fight  at  Me- 
notomy ;  but  his  eldest  son,  my  Uncle  Samuel,  had 


a  very  different  experience  to  report.  His  father 
had  told  him  that  morning  before  the  start  that 
he  must  stay  at  home  and  take  care  of  his  mother. 
His  youthful  blood  was  hot.  He  had  seen  Gov- 
ernor Gage  walk  in  and  out  of  this  house  as  if  he 
were  here  in  possession,  had  watched  the  move- 
ments of  the  troops  which  came  to  town  to  pro- 
tect him  in  his  royal  authority,  and  he  could  not 
be  dissuaded  from  going.  He  and  other  Danvers 
men  stationed  themselves  in  the  yard  of  Jason 
Russell.^  In  this  yard  were  many  bundles  of 
shingles,  indicating  that  the  proprietor  was  about 
to  shingle  his  house.  With  these  they  made  a 
sort  of  barricade,  and  inside  of  the  enclosure  they 
prepared  to  attack  the  British  soldiers.  When 
the  main  column  came  dov/n  the  highway,  they 
began  firing  without  thought  of  the  flanking  party, 
and  from  this  they  were  great  sufferers.  As 
Uncle  Samuel  was  driving  a  cartridge  into  his 
gun,  he  broke  his  wooden  ramrod,  and  turning  to 
Perley  Putnam,  asked  him  to  lend  his.  At  that 
instant  a  ball  from  the  rear  guard  of  the  British 
shot  Putnam  dead.  When  they  saw  they  were 
discovered  and  surrounded,  they  made  a  desperate 
struggle  for  life,  and  some  of  them  escaped  un- 
harmed. Uncle  Samuel  being  one  of  the  more 
fortunate  ones. 

Danvers  had  eight  companies  which  responded 
to  the  Lexington   alarm.      They  numbered  fully 

1  See  "  Beneath  Old  Roof  Trees  "  for  house  and  story. 


three  hundred  men  ;  but  we  should  bear  in  mind 
that  the  Danvers  of  1775  was  a  very  large  town, 
including,  besides  the  present  town  known  by 
that  name,  that  now  set  off  as  Peabody.  With 
the  exception  of  the  militia  already  mentioned, 
these  companies  were  minute-men  and  Alarm 
Lists  organized  by  the  authority  of  the  Congress 
in  anticipation  of  the  difficulty.  Some  of  these 
companies  seemed  to  be  made  up  with  regard  to 
the  neighborly  associations  of  the  members.  The 
messenger  apparently  first  aroused  the  people  of 
the  south  part  of  the  town,  now  Peabody,  whence 
it  was  carried  with  great  rapidity  throughout  the 
entire  territory,  and  a  response  was  immediately 
made.  "From  field  and  mill,  from  farm  and  shop, 
from  parsonage  and  humble  dwelling,"  they  set 
forth  to  their  country's  defence  :  — 

"  Swift  as  the  summons  came  they  left 
The  plough,   mid  furrow,   standing  still. 
The  half-ground  corn-grist  in  the  mill, 
The  spade  in  earth,   the  axe  in  cleft. 

They  went  where  duty  seemed  to  call, 
They  scarcely  asked  the  reason  why; 
They  only  knew  they  could  but  die, 
And  death  was  not  the  worst  of  all." 

It  was  Samuel  Epes's^  company  that  suffered 
the    most.      They  belonged  in  the  south  part  of 

1  For  Captain  Epes's  first  service  in  the  Revolution,  see  page  18 
of  "Beneath  Old  Roof  Trees." 


the  town.  When  the  alarm  was  given,  Captain 
Epes  made  haste  to  Salem,  and  obtained  from 
his  Colonel  permission  to  march  in  advance  of  his 
regiment.  They  made  the  journey  to  Menotomy, 
sixteen  miles,  in  four  hours.  Gideon  Foster,  later 
general,  who  had  been  a  member  of  this  company, 
appeared  in  the  capacity  of  captain  over  a  portion 
of  Epes's  men,  acting  as  a  separate  company ;  but 
the  brave  acts  of  these  squads  cannot  be  well  sep- 
arated ;  five  of  the  young  men  were  killed. 

The  other  losses  were  from  Captain  Israel 
Hutchinson's  company,  which  numbered  fifty-three 
officers  and  privates.  They  were  from  Danvers- 
port  and  Beverly.  Two  were  killed,  and  some 
were  wounded.  Joseph  Bell  was  taken  prisoner 
and  carried  to  Boston,  and  kept  on  an  English 
frigate  for  two  months.  At  the  expiration  of  two 
days  the  Danvers  men  returned  to  their  homes,  to 
mingle  their  tears  with , those  who  were  saddened 
by  the  day's  experience.  The  bodies  of  the  slain 
were  taken  to  their  homes,  and  later  interred  with 
appropriate  ceremonies ;  those  belonging  to  Israel 
Hutchinson's  company  being  first  taken  to  his 
house,  which  stood  until  a  recent  date  where  the 
railway  station  is  now  located  at  Danversport. 

Israel  Hutchinson  was  nearly  fifty  years  of  age 
at  the  opening  of  the  Revolution,  and  had  repeat- 
edly proved  his  bravery  by  fighting  for  the  king. 
He  fought  at  Lake  George  and  Ticonderoga  in 
1758.     In  the  following  year  was  with  Wolfe  when 

BURIAL    OF   THE   DEAD  1 89 

he  scaled  the  Heights  of  Abraham,  and  routed  the 
French  under  Montcalm.  Thus,  with  age  and  ex- 
perience on  his  side,  he  entered  the  service  of  the 
patriots  to  the  credit  of  his  native  town.  He  was 
early  in  the  Revolution  raised  to  the  rank  of  a 
colonel.  He  was  in  the  siege  of  Boston,  and  after 
the  evacuation  occupied  Fort  Hill,  and  was  sent 
to  New  York  in  the  following  October.  He  was 
afterwards  in  command  of  Fort  Lee  and  Fort 
Washington,  and  crossed  the  Delaware  with  Wash- 
ington in  his  retreat  through  New  Jersey,  and  re- 
ceived the  approbation  of  the  father  of  his  country. 
His  love  of  country  was  manifested  after  the  war 
in  faithful  service  in  the  Legislature  of  his  State 
and  in  many  positions  of  honor  and  trust. 

As  Danvers  was  not  on  the  enemy's  line  of 
march,  there  was  no  great  haste  to  bury  the  dead, 
so  the  ordinary  funeral  rites  were  observed.  Two 
companies  from  Salem  performed  escort  duty. 
''  With  reversed  arms,  muffled  drums,  and  measured 
steps,  they  led  the  long  procession.  On  the  way 
they  were  met  by  a  band  of  soldiers  from  Newbury- 
port,  Salisbury,  and  Amesbury,  marching  to  join 
the  army  besieging  Boston.  These  formed  in  single 
ranks  on  each  side  of  the  road,  and  the  mournful 
procession  passed  between  them.  After  the  bodies 
were  deposited,  three  volleys  were  fired  over  their 
graves,  but  they  could  not  rouse  the  slumberers. 
No  din  of  resounding  arms,  no  alarms  of  war,  no 
convulsions  of  nature,  can  disturb  them.     Nothing 



but  the  voice  of  the  archangel  and  the  trump  of 
God  — 

'  Can  reach  the  peaceful  sleepers  there.'  " 

Thus  Danvers  lost  seven  of  her  strong,  promis- 
ing young  men,  one-seventh  of  the  whole  number 
of  the  Americans  slain  that  day, 
the  largest  number  of  any  town, 
with  the  exception  of  Lexington. 
A  monument  to  their  memory 
was  erected  in  1835,  on  the  six- 
tieth anniversary  of  the  battle. 
An  address  was  made  by  General 
Foster,  one  of  the  survivors  of 
the  battle,  of  whom  there  were 
nineteen  in  attendance. 

The   inscription  is   as  follows. 
On  the  east  side:  — 

Battle  of  Lexington,  April  19,  1775. 

Samuel  Cook,  aged  -t^Z  years  ;  Benj.  Daland,  25  ;  George  South- 
wick,  25  ;  JoTHAM  Webb,  22  ;  Henry  Jacobs,  22  ;  Ebenr. 

GOLDTHWAIT,  22  ;    PeRLEY  PuTNAM,  21  ; 

Citizens  of  Danvers  fell  on  that  day. 

Dulce  et  decorum  est  jpro  patria  tnori. 

(  It  is  sweet  and  honorable  to  die  for  one's  country. ) 

On  the  reverse  side  :  — 

Erected   by  Citizens  of   Danvers  on   the  6oth  Anniversary, 


By  the   subsequent  division   of   the  town,  this 
monument  is  to  be  seen  in  Peabody.     The  granite 


shaft  seems  hardly  in  keeping  with  its  present  sur- 
roundings, but  more  in  harmony  with  the  build- 
ings seen  on  that  square  sixty  years  ago.  Prom- 
inent among  them  was  the  Old  Bell  Tavern,  so 
called  from  the  wooden  representation  of  a  bell 
which  hung  from  the  sign-post.  On  this  was  in- 
scribed :  — 

I'll   toll  you  in,   if  you  have   need, 
And   feed  you  well,   and   bid   you  speed. 

The  house  was  formerly  a  place  of  common  re- 
sort, being  on  the  great  thoroughfare  from  the 
east  and  north  to  Boston.  Here  the  Salem  Regi- 
ment, under  Colonel  Timothy  Pickering,  halted 
for  refreshment  on  their  march  to  Bunker  Hill 
on  the  17th  of  June,  1775.  Their  delay  aroused, 
Mrs.  Anna  Endicott,  a  patriotic  woman,  to  repri- 
mand the  colonel  in  her  characteristic  manner, 
*' Why  on  earth  don't  you  march  ?  Don't  you  hear 
the  guns  in  Charlestown  }  " 

''This  was  the  place  for  the  villagers  to  learn 
the  news  of  passing  events,  for  every  traveller  was 
expected  to  furnish  his  quota.  It  was  the  village 
exchange,  where  prices  and  every-day  gossip  were 
discussed,  and  the  public  affairs  of  the  Colonies  and 
the  mother  country  settled.  Here,  too,  on  Sunday 
the  more  remote  villagers  dismounted  from  their 
horses  at  the  old  block,  and  walked  to  the  meeting- 
house ;  again  to  return,  after  the  two  hours'  sermon, 
and  partake,  in  a  snug  corner,  of  a  dinner  from 


their  well-filled  saddle-bags.  This  was  also  the 
place  where  the  people  met  to  celebrate  public 

''  The  loyal  neighbors  here  collected  to  mourn 
the  demise  of  the  good  Queen  Anne,  and  rejoice 
in  the  accession  of  the  first  George.  His  depar- 
ture and  the  rise  of  his  son  George  11.  were  here 
commemorated  over  the  same  bowl  of  punch. 
George  III.  was  also  welcomed  with  a  zeal  that 
was  only  equalled  by  that  with  which  they  drank 
confusion  to  his  ministers.  The  odious  Stamp 
Act  and  all  Parliament  taxes  on  the  Colonies  were 
patriotically  denounced."  In  fact,  all  the  various 
acts  of  the  town  of  Danvers  were  freely  discussed 
in  this  house,  which  is  still  remembered  by  the 
old  people. 

"  Nothinsf  created  a  o:reater  disturbance  there 
than  the  tea-meeting  of  May  28,  1770,  when  Dr. 
Amos  Putnam  was  moderator,  and  a  committee 
was  chosen  '  upon  ye  public  grievance  as  to  ye 
duty  on  tea.'  Besides  agreeing  to  the  non-impor- 
tation Act,  it  was  also  voted  not  to  drink  foreign 
tea,  or  to  allow  their  families  to  indulge  in  the 
beverage  until  the  act  of  Parliament  imposing  a 
duty  upon  it  was  repealed,  etc.  (cases  of  sickness 
excepted).  A  committee  was  chosen  to  carry 
copies  of  these  votes  to  every  household.  All 
persons  who  refused  to  sign  these  copies  were  to 
be  branded  as  enemies  to  the  liberties  of  the  peo- 
ple, and  their  names  were  to  be  registered  accord- 

A   DA  A' VERS    TORY  1 93 

ingly.  Any  one  detected  selling  tea  was  to  be 
branded  as  a  Tory,  and  given  a  ride  on  a  rail.  The 
keeper  of  the  tavern,  Isaac  Wilson,  was  convicted, 
but  reprieved  from  his  sentence  by  furnishing  the 
villagers  with  an  ample  bucket  of  punch,  and  pub- 
licly repeating  a  couplet  prepared  for  him."  We 
can  hardly  appreciate  the  condition  of  society, 
when  a  proud  landlord  is  forced  to  bow  his  high 
head,  and  repeat,  — 

I,   Isaac  Wilson,  a  Tory  be, 
I,   Isaac  Wilson,   I  sells  tea. 


*'  A  man  convinced  against  his  will 
Is  of  the  same  opinion  still;  " 

and  I  am  inclined  to  the  belief  that  the  Danvers 
landlord  was  of  that  class. 

Leaving  the  site  of  the  Bell  Tavern  and  the  old 
burying-ground  near  by,  where  sleep  the  brave 
who  died  for  their  country  in  1775,  I  invite  my 
readers  to  seek  out  with  me  homes  that  still  exist, 
as  when  grandsires  of  the  present  owners  gathered 
their  families  about  the  same  hearth-stones,  and 
there  by  the  light  of  the  pine  torch  or  tallow  dip 
taught  lessons  of  true  patriotism. 




OF    DEACON    PUTNAM,    WHO    LED    A    COMPANY    ON 

APRIL     19,     1775.  DANVERS    MINISTERS    IN    THE 




Under  the  escort  of  Rev.  Alfred  P.  Putnam,  a 
noted  son  of  Danvers,  we  leave  the  centre  of  the 
town  by  the  great  road  to  Topsfield,  and  soon 
come  to  the  birthplace  of  General  Moses  Porter. 
It  stands  a  little  back  from  the  modern  highway, 
and  faces  confidently  to  the  south.  In  these 
rooms  we  may  well  linger,  and  ponder  the  story 
of  the  Revolution.  Patriots  of  both  sexes  have 
been  cradled  here,  and  have  left  an  indelible  im- 
pression upon  the  minds  of  all  who  thoughtfully 
pass  through  these  great  square  rooms.  It  was 
originally  the  home  of  the  Rea  family,  one  of 
whom.  Dr.  Caleb  Rea,  was  a  surgeon  in  a  regi- 
ment in  the  expedition  against  Ticonderoga.  His 
sister  Sarah  married  Benjamin  Porter;  and  they 
were  the  parents  of  Moses  Porter,  born  in   1756, 


who  became  a  distinguished  general  in  both  wars 
with  England.  Although  but  nineteen  years  of 
age  at  the  opening  of  the  Revolution,  this  man 
made  an  enduring  record.  At  the  battle  of  Bun- 
ker Hill,  in  the  artillery  company  of  Captain  Trev- 
ett,  when  but  nine  men  stood  by  the  captain, 
Moses  Porter  was  one  of  them,  and  displayed  su- 
perior skill  in  the  management  of  one  of  the  field 
pieces.  He  served  in  Captain  Thomas  Foster's 
company  during  the  siege  of  Boston,  was  made 
lieutenant  in  1780,  and  received  promotions  until 
he  was  head  of  that  arm  of  the  service.  Wounds 
he  received,  but  they  never  deterred  him  from 
remaining  in  service  until  his  death  in  1822.  Gen- 
eral Porter  was  wedded  to  his  country  ;  no  other 
bride  ever  received  his  affections  ;  for  her  he  was 
willing  to  sacrifice  his  life,  and  on  her  bosom  he 
fell  asleep. 

"  How  sleep  the  brave   who  sink  to  rest 
By  all  their  country's  wishes  blest!" 

Over   his   grave,   in   a   secluded   spot,   stands   a 
modest  slab  on  which  is  read,  — 


OF    THE    ARMY    OF   THE    U.    S.    A. 

An  ardent  and  inflexible  patriot,  a  brave  and  honorable  soldier,  an  unas- 
suming and  virtuous  citizen,  a  generous  and  faithful  friend.     He 
served  his  country  with  distinguished  abihty  and  reputa- 
tion, from  the  commencement  of  the  Revolu- 
tionary war  till   he   expired,  full   of 
years  and   honors,    on  the 
14th  of  April,  A.D.,  1822  vE.  66. 


From  the  old  garret  of  the  Porter  house  have 
been  gathered  many  of  the  general's  military  pa- 
pers and  private  correspondence,  and  from  these 
it  is  hoped  there  will  yet  be  prepared  an  adequate 
volume  to  the  memory  of  a  great  man.  Among 
these  letters  is  found  evidence  of  the  patriotic 
part  taken  by  his  sister  Sarah  in  her  knitting  and 
sewing  for  his  comfort,  and  for  that  of  his  soldiers. 
Sarah  Porter  was  but  one  of  hundreds  of  her  sex 
who  acted  well  a  noble  part  in  the  great  struggle 
for  the  independence  which  we  now  enjoy. 

Those  who  claim  for  Moses  Porter  a  more  im- 
posing monument  may  find  it  in  the  great  bowlder 
at  the  rear  of  his  paternal  mansion.  Standing 
upon  it,  I  could  see  in  fancy  his  tiny  bare  feet 
climbing  over  its  rugged  sides,  and  the  little  group 
gathered  there  by  the  tired  mother,  who,  coming 
out  for  rest,  had  taken  the  opportunity  to  impress 
helpful  lessons  upon  the  youthful  minds  intrusted 
to  her  care. 

This  bowlder,  towering  above  all  others,  seems 
to  typify  the  man,  who,  in  his  firmness  of  purpose 
and  inflexibility  of  character,  stood  out  alone  and 
above  others,  and  when  confronted  by  duty  acted 
as  though  saying,  — 

"  Come  one,  come  all,  this  rock  shall  fly 
From  its  firm  base  as  soon  as  I." 

Leaving  the  Porter  House,  in  which  my  guide 
has  a  family  interest,  we  pass  on  to  the  Putman 


house,  on  the  paternal  homestead  of  Rev.  Alfred 
Porter  Putnam,  the  guide  for  the  hour.  It  is 
reached  by  a  drive  from  the  highway  through  well- 
cultivated  grounds.  The  house  is  typical  of  its 
period,  made  picturesque  by  a  large  tree  in  front 
and  a  small  one  at  a  corner.  "  From  here,"  said 
my  guide,  *'  went  my  great-grandfather,  Deacon 
Edmund  Putman,  at  the  head  of  his  company  of 
seventeen  neighbors  on  the  19th  of  April,  1775." 

But  before  tracing  out  the  footprints  of  these 
minute-men,  let  us  consider  for  a  moment  the 
origin  of  the  house.  It  is  supposed  to  have  been 
built  by  Daniel  Rea,  the  head  of  that  family  in 
this  country  ;  and  after  its  possession  by  three 
generations  of  the  name  it  was  purchased  by  Ed- 
mund Putman,  who  carried  on  the  trades  of  tailor 
and  farmer.  As  a  testimonial  of  his  honest  deal- 
ing and  good  standing  with  his  neighbors,  we  find 
that  in  1762  he  was  chosen  deacon  of  the  First 
Church,  in  which  position  he  served  twenty-three 
years.  '*  My  grandsire  was  chosen  captain  of  the 
Alarm  List  of  the  third  company  in  this  town  on 
the  6th  of  March,  1775.  Rev.  Benjamin  Balch 

was  chairman  of  the  meeting.  The  vote  for 
grandfather  was  unanimous,  and  also  that  for  lieu- 
tenant and  sergeant,  the  former  being  for  Rev. 
Mr.  Balch,  and  the  latter  for  Tarrant  Putnam." 

In  this  house,  now  occupied  by  the  sixth  gen- 
eration from  Edmund  Putnam,  though  of  a  differ- 
ent name  (Fowler),  we  catch  glimpses  of  the  fading 


scenes  of  the  days  of  trial.  Here  met  in  council 
the  minister,  the  deacon,  and  faithful  churchmen, 
and  from  here  they  went  out  to  act  the  part  of 
Christian  patriots. 

Other  ministers  of  Danvers  used  their  influence 
in  the  patriot  cause.  Mr.  Holt  of  the  Middle  Pre- 
cinct (Peabody)  was  known  to  say,  ''  I  had  rather 
liv^e  on  potatoes  than  submit."  He  supplied  him- 
self with  a  musket,  and  drilled  with  Captain  Epes's 
company.  Mr.  Wadsworth  of  the  village  parish 
was  very  ardent,  and  was  seen  at  the  North  River 
Bridge,  Salem,  with  his  musket  in  hand  ;  and  to 
his  words  of  persuasion  more  than  all  else  is  doubt- 
less due  the  escape  from  the  first  slaughter. 

In  the  March  following,  Captain  Putnam  was 
unanimously  chosen  as  selectman,  and  also  as  an 
assessor.  This  was  at  a  time  when  these  officers 
in  any  town  called  for  the  exercise  of  the  best  of 
mature  judgment.  He  was  also  a  member  of  the 
committee  in  1778  to  consider  the  report  of  a  form 
of  government. 

But  Deacon  Edmund  was  only  one  of  many 
Putnams  of  Danvers  who  responded  to  the  Lex- 
ington alarm.  The  returns  show  that  thirty-four 
of  the  name  marched  from  Danvers,  and  had  some 
part  in  that  day's  struggle.  As  we  have  already 
seen,  Perley  Putnam  was  killed,  and  his  brother 
Nathan  was  wounded. 

Note.  —  A  newspaper  of  those  times  furnishes  evidence  of  the 
efforts  made  to  recover  fire-arms  lost  by  the  Provincials  on  April  19, 


thus  proving  the  scarcity  of  munitions  of  war.  From  the  Nezv  Eng- 
land Chronicle  ox  ihe  Essex  Gazelle  of  May  29,  1775,  is  gathered  the 
following:  "  Lost  in  the  battle  of  Menotomy  by  Nathan  Putnam,  of 
Capt.  Hutchinson's  Company,  who  was  there  badly  wounded,  a 
French  Firelock,  marked  D.  No.  6,  with  a  marking  iron,  on  the 
Breech.  Said  Putnam  carried  it  to  a  Cross  Road,  near  a  mill. 
Whoever  has  said  Gun  in  Poffeffion  is  defired  to  return  it  to  Col. 
Manftield  of  Lynn,  or  to  the  Selectmen  of  Danvers,  and  he  shall 
be  rewarded  for  his  trouble." 

While  this  town  was  the  place  of  the  first  Put- 
nam settlement,  the  name  was  by  no  means  con- 
fined to  Danvers  when  Provincial  government  was 
overthrown.  Eighty-six  names,  all  of  Danvers 
line,  are  recorded  at  the  State  House  as  turning 
out  on  April.  19  ;  and  within  two  centuries  from 
the  time  the  first  John  drove  his  bounds  in  Dan- 
vers, about  thirty-five  hundred  of  his  descendants 
were  abroad  in  the  land.  Coming  in  to  the  Putnam 
headquarters,  we  are  inclined  to  halt  at  a  modern 
house  on  this  old  farm,  better  known  as  *'Oak 
Knoll,"  the  home  of  the  lamented  Quaker  bard. 
But  it  is  to  the  birthplace  of  General  Israel  Put- 
nam that  we  are  making  our  way.  Witch  houses, 
Rebecca  Nourse  and  Giles  Corey,  must  not  allure 
us  from  our  course. 

What  school-boy  does  not  open  his  eyes  and 
prick  up  his  ears  at  the  mere  mention  of  "  Old 
Put "  }  But  my  own  confession  is,  that  I  had  al- 
most fallen  into  the  habit  of  regarding  this  man 
as  a  sort  of  monster,  struggling  in  a  dim  mythical 
haze  ;  but  when  I  turned  in  at  the  open  gate,  and 


Stood  at  the  threshold  of  the  birthplace  of  that 
hero,  I  came  fully  to  my  senses.  Oh,  how  re- 
freshing it  is,  in  these  days  of  constant  changes 
in  ownership  of  real  estate,  to  find  this  home  still 
retained  by  the  family  !  Our  knock  at  the  front 
door  met  with  a  response  from  one  by  the  name 
of  Putnam,  as  did  that  of  guests  a  century  and 
a  half  ago,  when  the  young  man  Israel  walked 
in  and  out  the  same  doorway.  The  genuine  old- 
school  lady,  by  word  and  smile,  extended  a  cordial 
welcome  ;  and  we  were  at  once  assured  by  the 
words  of  Miss  Susan  Putnam  that  she  was  of  the 
seventh  generation  of  the  family  on  that  farm. 
The  line  is  John,  Thomas,  Joseph,  David,  Israel, 
Daniel,  and  Susan,  who  furnished  the  information. 
The  front  and  more  modern  part,  which  first 
meets  the  eye  of  the  visitor,  was  built  in  1744; 
while  that  in  the  rear,  with  its  own  front  door,  is 
supposed  to  date  back  to  1650.  The  part  most 
prominent  in  the  cut  was  the  original  house,  built 
by  Thomas,  grandfather  of  Israel.  It  was  while 
the  northeast  blasts  were  piling  up  the  January 
snows  of  1 71 8  that  in  the  upper  room  of  this 
humble  home  the  boy  Israel  was  born.  Joseph 
and  Elizabeth  (Porter)  Putnam  were  the  happy 
parents.  This  son  was  nearly  a  month  old  before 
he  was  taken  to  the  meeting-house  for  the  rite  of 
baptism.  The  unusual  delay  may  be  accounted 
for  by  a  desire  of  the  mother  to  accompany  the 
father  to  the  altar  of  baptism  ;  but  more  likely  was 


the  result  of  the  very  severe  weather  of  that 
month,  which  Cotton  Mather  describes  as  fol- 
lows :  — 

"  Another  snow  came  on  which  ahnost  buried  ye  Memory 
of  ye  former,  with  a  storm  so  famous  that  Heaven  laid  an 
Interdict  on  ye  Religious  Assemblies  throughout  ye  Country, 
on  this  Lord's  day,  ye  like  whereunto  had  never  been  seen 
before.  The  Indians  near  an  hundred  years  old,  affirm  that 
their  Fathers  never  told  them  of  anything  that  equalled  it.'' 

Turning  back  to  that  Sabbath  morning  of  early 
February,  we  can  see  the  family  horse  led  up  to 
the  door  of  the  home,  the  mother  take  her  seat  on 
the  pillion,  with  the  babe  carefully  wrapped  in  its 
bearing-cloth  in  her  arms,  and  the  father  mount 
to  his  seat  in  front,  take  up  the  reins,  and  start 
off  to  the  meeting-house.  They  make  their  way 
slowly,  for  the  path  is  rough  indeed,  cut  out  of 
the  great  banks  of  snow  which  are  piled  in  heaps 
on  either  side. 

What  a  scene  is  this  when  the  devoted  parents, 
shivering  from  the  ride,  enter  the  cold,  barnlike 
meeting-house,  and  carry  their  babe  to  the  altar, 
their  frozen  shoes  clatterino:  on  the  rouirh  boards 
of  the  broad  aisle,  telling  the  measure  of  each 
step  as  they  go.  While  the  mother  unwraps  the 
babe,  the  father  makes  known  by  gentle  whisper 
the  name  selected  for  his  last  born,  and  the  Rev. 
Peter  Clark  cracks  the  ice  in  the  christening 
basin,  dips  his  fingers  to  the  water,  and  laying 
them   upon   the    innocent   brow,    says,   "  Israel,    I 


baptize  thee  in  the  name  of  the  Father,  and  of  the 
Son,  and  of  the  Holy  Ghost,  Amen."  Surely  with 
the  treatment  of  the  babes  of  those  days  there 
was  a  continuous  example  of  the  survival  of  the 
fittest.  Born  of  the  best  of  New  England  stock, 
and  of  parents  accustomed  to  hardships,  and  en- 
during this  early  test,  the  boy  Israel  grew  and  de- 
veloped a  marvellous  physical  activity  and  power 
of  endurance,  which  served  him  well,  and  enabled 
him  to  do  at  the  age  of  threescore  what  the  ordi- 
nary man  of  forty  years  would  quail  beneath. 

Desirous  of  entering  the  house  by  the  door  of 
Israel's  day,  we  made  our  way  out  and  around  to 
the  front  door  of  long  ago,  and  crossed  the  thresh- 
old familiar  to  his  restless  feet.  Up  the  narrow 
staircase  we  went,  and  into  the  room  where  the 
child  first  saw  the  light.  A  board  partition  makes 
two  apartments  of  the  original  room,  but  there 
can  be  no  mistake  as  to  the  part  in  question; 
for  there  is  the  open  fireplace,  with  its  smutty 
back,  and  the  rude  fire-dogs,  as  when  the  flames 
crackled  on  the  hearth,  and  rolled  up  the  chimney 
to  mingle  with  the  wintry  blast  of  171 8.  There 
are  the  rough-hewn  posts  at  the  corners,  and  thick 
projecting  beams  overhead,  with  no  attemjDt  at 
disguise.  There  is  little  else  here  that  is  tangible 
to  remind  us  of  him  whom  we  delight  to  honor  as 
Major-General  Israel  Putnam  ;  but  as  we  love  the 
hard-handed  yeomanry  who  formed  the  real  back- 
bone of  the  Revolution,  so  we  love  to  linger  on 


the  ground  which  their  feet  have  trodden,  and 
hear  from  the  lips  of  one  of  the  seventh  genera- 
tion the  stories  confirmed  which  we  have  often 
heard  before. 

'*  Robust  and  full  of  energy,  he  was  a  boy  given 
to  sports,  and  to  feats  of  strength  and  daring, 
often  the  champion  of  courageous  exploits,  all  of 
which  were  somewhat  prophetic  of  his  more  ex- 
traordinary powers  and  achievements  in  maturer 

Much  of  Israel's  boyhood  was  spent  in  Boxford, 
at  the  home  of  his  stepfather,  where  perhaps  the 
school  advantages  were  no  better  than  those  of 
Danvers,  and  the  boy's  education  was  defective. 
When  he  had  reached  the  age  proper  for  him  to 
set  up  for  himself,  he  returned  to  the  old  home- 
stead, and  settled  on  a  portion  of  the  farm,  and 
built  a  small  house,  the  cellar  of  w^hich  still 
remains.  He  married,  July  19,  1739,  Hannah, 
daughter  of  Joseph  and  Mehitable  (Putnam)  Pope, 
and  the  young  couple  established  a  home  for  them- 
selves, adding  another  to  the  then  almost  score  of 
Putnam  homes.  After  the  birth  of  a  son  Israel, 
the  young  couple,  seized  with  the  spirit  of  adven- 
ture, with  many  others  set  out  for  broader  fields  ; 
and  the  remainder  of  the  story  of  ''  Old  Put "  will 
be  found  in  another  connection  in  this  series. 

The  great  willow-tree  standing  in  the  yard  re- 
minds us  of  many  changes  since  Israel  Putnam 
left  the  homestead.      It  was  planted  by  a  slave  of 


the  family,  who  is  still  remembered  for  her  faith- 
fulness, although  she  has  been  sleeping  for  many 
years  with  those  whom  she  served. 

The  Putnams  who  remain  at  the  old  home  are 
descendants  of  David,  brother  of  General  Israel, 
and  none  of  his  line  of  the  family  have  ever  set- 
tled in  Danvers  ;  but  they  are  numerous  in  the 
world,  a  large  group  of  them  being  found  in  Bed- 
ford, Mass.  We  will  now  make  a  digression  to 
hear  the  story  by  a  great-granddaughter  of  General 
Israel  Putnam,  Mrs.  Mary  (  Waldo  )  Webber. 

She  was  born  at  Pomfret,  Conn.,  August  15, 
1807.  She  is  the  daughter  of  John  Augustus 
Gleason  and  Elizabeth  Waldo,  and  granddaughter 
of  Samuel  Waldo  and  Mary  (  Molly  )  daughter  of 
General  Israel  Putnam. 

A  large  part  of  Mrs.  Webber's  life  has  been 
spent  in  Bedford,  — the  town  where  Israel,  a  cousin 
of  the  general,  settled  about  the  time  that  the 
Connecticut  home  was  established,  the  same  spirit 
of  adventure  having  actuated  both  this  one  who 
settled  in  Bedford  and  the  one  who  went  to  Con- 
necticut to  leave  the  Danvers  settlement.  The 
Bedford  people  remember  their  Israel  Putnam 
with  pride ;  for  he  was  a  selectman  at  the  begin-- 
ning  of  the  town,  and  one  of  the  first  deacons  of 
the  church,  and  a  benefactor  of  the  new  settle- 

It  was  early  in  the  present  century  that  the 
Gleason  branch   of   the    Putnam  family  made  its 

STORY  BY  MAKY   {IVALDO)    WEBBER       20$ 

way  to  Bedford,  Lewis  Putnam  Gleason  being  the 
pioneer  at  this  time. 

Mrs.  Webber  spent  some  of  her  girlhood  with 
her  grandmother,  Elizabeth  Waldo.     Her  longing 

Mary  (Waldo)  Webber,  Great  Granddaughter  of  "Old  Put" 

for  amusement  was  gratified,  when  sitting  at  the 
old  hearth-stone  with  her  grandmother,  by  listen- 
ing to  the  stories  treasured  in  the  family  of  the 
wolf-hunter,  the  Indian  fighter,  and  the  hero  of 
Bunker  Hill. 



As  Told  on  Her  Eighty-Ninth  Birthday. 

"  Yes,  I  keep  old  grandfather's  picture  hanging 
in  my  room.  It  seems  but  yesterday  that  I  sat  by 
the  side  of  Grandmother  Waldo,  for  whom  I  was 
named,  and  heard  her  tell  of  the  trials  of  Grand- 
father Putnam.  Those  of  the  Indian  wars  and 
the  wolves  charmed  me  much ;  and  I  often  found 
the  tears  running  down  my  cheeks,  as  I  hid  my 
head  beneath  her  apron,  when  she  told  of  the  hair- 
breadth escapes  from  the  savages.  I  suppose  he 
had  the  fight  born  in  him  ;  for  when  but  a  boy  he 
first  displayed  it  in  Boston,  whither  he  had  gone 
on  a  visit.  He  was  doubtless  dressed  in  the  coarse 
cloth  spun  and  woven  at  the  old  home  in  Danvers, 
and  probably  looked  rather  queer  in  the  eyes  of 
those  sons  of  wealthy  merchants  and  office-holders 
of  the  Province.  They  began  to  pick  upon  him. 
He  bore  it  for  a  while,  but  at  length  challenged 
one  of  the  brilliantly  attired  youths,  twice  his  size, 
and  vanquished  him,  to  the  great  amusement  of  a 
crowd  of  people  who  looked  on  to  see  the  rustic's 

"My  ancestor's  Connecticut  home  was  at  Pom- 
fret,  known  as  Brooklyn  since  1783.  He  had  just 
started  in  as  a  pioneer,  and  was  laboring  hard  to 
clear    some  land    bought  of    Governor   Jonathan 

Scions  of  Putnam  Tree 

1.  Harold  Augustus  Gleason. 

2.  Clifford  Raymond  Gleason. 

3-  Carrie  Putnam  Webber. 

4-  Paul  Baron  Webber. 

5.  Marcus  Bernard  Webber. 

6.  Lewis  Gleason  Webber. 

7.  Ruth  Isabel  Gleason. 

8.  Jennie  Frances  Gleason. 

9.  Lewis  Edward  Pierce. 
ID.   Bertha  Gleason  Pierce. 

II.  Marie  Withington  Gleason. 

12.  Dorothy  Stearns  Gleason, 

13.  Gertrude  Evelyn  Gleason. 

14.  Arthur  Lewis  Gleason. 

15.  Prudence  Markham. 

16.  Waldo  Wood  Gleason. 

STORY  OF  MARY   {WALDO)     WEBBER        20/ 

Belcher.  He  had  a  family  to  care  for,  and  it  was 
annoying  to  have  his  sheep  continually  carried 
off  by  wolves.  In  one  night  he  had  a  large  flock 
of  sheep  and  goats  killed,  besides  many  lambs  and 
kids  wounded.  This  was  done  by  a  she-wolf, 
which,  with  her  whelps,  had  for  several  years  in- 
fested the  locality.  The  young  were  commonly 
destroyed  by  hunters,  but  the  old  one  was  too 
cunning  for  them, 

"At  leno;th  o-randfather  and  others  formed  a 
company  to  hunt  in  turns  until  they  should  kill 
the  old  enemy.  It  was  known  that,  having  lost 
the  toes  from  one  foot  by  a  steel  trap,  she  made 
one  track  shorter  than  the  other.  This  betrayed 
her  route  on  the  snow.  She  was  driven  into  a 
den  a  little  distance  from  grandfather's  house. 
The  folks  came  together  with  dogs,  guns,  straw, 
fire,  and  sulphur  to  attack  her.  The  hounds  went 
in,  and  came  out  in  a  bleeding  condition.  The 
smoke  of  burning  straw  did  not  start  her,  and  the 
fumes  of  brimstone  were  to  no  purpose. 

"At  length,  tired  of  all  this,  grandfather  pro- 
posed to  his  negro  man  to  go  down  in  and  shoot 
her  ;  but  he  refused  to  comply,  so  grandfather  de- 
cided to  go,  and  went  regardless  of  the  protests  of 
his  companions.  He  knew  wild  animals  did  not 
like  a  close  contact  with  fire,  so  he  stocked  him- 
self with  birch  bark,  and  prepared  for  the  attack. 
He  threw  off  his  coat  and  waistcoat,  and  having 
a  long  rope  fastened  around  his  legs,  by  which  he 


might  be  pulled  back^  he  entered  head  foremost, 
with  blazing  torch  in  hand. 

''  He  went  in,  and  down,  and  soon  saw  the  eyes 
of  the  beast  glaring  at  him.  Startled  at  the  ap- 
proach of  the  flaming  torch,  she  gnashed  her  teeth 
and  growled.  He  then  gave  a  signal  to  the  men 
at  the  end  of  the  rope,  who  pulled  him  out  so 
rapidly  as  to  strip  off  his  garments,  and  some 
flesh  as  well.  But  with  his  gun  loaded  with  nine 
buckshots,  and  torch  in  hand,  he  retraced  the 
course.  He  fired  and  killed  the  animal,  was  pulled 
out,  and  after  reviving  from  almost  suffocation,  he 
went  in  a  third  time,  and  the  creature  was  taken 

"Grandfather  had  some  trying  experiences  in 
the  French  and  Indian  wars,  but  he  awed  the 
savages  so  they  dared  not  kill  him.  They  thought 
he  had  a  charmed  life,  and  called  him  *  a  god  or 
a  devil,'  they  could  not  tell  which.  By  his  ser- 
vices against  the  French  and  their  Canadian  and 
Indian  allies,  he  acquired  a  good  reputation  as  a 
soldier  and  a  hero  ;  and  so  he  had  gained  many 
honors  from  the  authorities  of  Connecticut,  and 
entered  the  service  of  the  Revolution  with  his 
well-earned  popularity." 






Washington's    letter    to     major     lowe.  — 

major-general    gideon    foster.  list    of 

eight  danvers  companies 

After  the  digression  of  the  previous  chapter, 
made  in  order  to  follow  the  life  of  Israel  Putnam, 
we  now  turn  again  to  listen  to  Rev.  Alfred  P.  Put- 
nam, our  Danvers  guide,  and  learn  of  the  King 
Hooper  house. 

"  The  Hon.  Robert  Hooper  was  a  wealthy  mer- 
chant and  acknowledged  autocrat  of  Marblehead. 
He  had  become  weary  of  his  limited  surround- 
ings, pushed  out  into  the  country,  and  spent 
a  portion  of  his  rapidly  accumulating  wealth  in 
building  a  princely  residence.  The  site  is  a  part 
of  the  twenty  acres  formerly  laid  out  to  Governor 
Endicott,  who,  like  Governor  John  Winthrop,  al- 
ways was  on  the  lookout  for  desirable  lands,  and 
became  the  possessor  of  thousands  of  acres.  This 
house  was  built  about  1770,  and  here  the  merchant 


set  up  his  home  with  the  expectation  of  spending 
his  last  years  in  the  quiet  of  Danvers,  and  in  the 
full  enjoyment  of  his  abundance.  This  is  the  home 
to  which  reference  has  already  been  made,  where 
Governor  Gage  found  a  cordial  welcome  when 
moving  out  of  Boston  in  June,  1774.  The  patriotic 
people  of  this  town  were  not  well  pleased  with 
the  coming  of  the  governor,  yet  there  was  some- 
thing interesting  to  them  in  the  splendor  which 
attended  his  presence  among  them." 

Mr.  Putnam  resumed  by  saying,  "  At  the  time 
of  the  coming  of  this  Marblehead  merchant  into 
our  midst,  there  was  little  afifinity  between  our 
grandparents  and  any  one  who  favored  the  Stamp 
Act.  But  Robert  Hooper  was  rated  as  very  hon- 
est and  kind-hearted,  and  they  received  him  with 
becoming  grace.  When  he  opened  his  doors  to 
the  royal  governor,  who  was  here  to  force  our 
people  to  submit  to  the  obnoxious  acts  of  Parlia- 
ment, the  farmers  began  to  look  upon  their  new 
neighbor  as  a  Loyalist,  which  he  proved  to  be  ;  and 
his  name  was  reported  to  the  town  as  one  of  those 
inimical  to  the  cause  of  their  country." 

According  to  Drake,  this  mansion  is  one  of  the 
best  specimens  of  later  Colonial  architecture  in  ex- 
istence, and  we  readily  accept  the  decision.  The 
massive  building  has  an  elegant  front  door  leading 
into  the  hall.  This  extends  the  whole  length  of 
the  house,  with  doors  on  either  side  into  extensive 
apartments.     The  house  is  surmounted  by  a  gam- 


brel  roof  with  an  ornamental  balustrade  at  the 
top.  It  is  of  wood  ;  but  the  front  is  set  off  in 
panelling  so  as  to  represent  stone,  and  painted 
a  cold  gray,  which  adds  to  the  deception.  In  fact, 
the  old  mansion  bears  a  strong  resemblance  to 
the  stone  Hancock  house  which  formerly  stood  on 
Beacon  Street,  Boston.  The  Hooper  house  is  set 
back  from  the  highway,  surrounded  by  spacious, 
well-kept  grounds,  and  approached  by  shaded  ave- 
nues. The  beautiful  trees  have  already  afforded 
a  name  for  the  historic  place,  ''  The  Lindens." 
If,  as  the  Slavonians  imagined,  the  goddess  of 
love  ever  dwelt  in  this  variety  of  tree,  we  fancy 
she  was  not  in  power  at  this  place  during  the 
stay  of  Governor  Gage. 

The  public  is  indebted  to  the  Peabody  family 
for  the  restoration  and  preservation  of  this  Co- 
lonial mansion,  which  the  proud  builder  never 
enjoyed  after  the  Revolution.  Even  a  public  re- 
nunciation of  his  Loyalist  principles  did  not  fully 
reinstate  him  in  the  confidence  of  his  neighbors. 
His  business  was  ruined,  and  his  fortune  wasted, 
so  that  he  died  a  poor  man. 

Through  the  courtesy  of  Mr.  and  Mrs.  Francis 
Peabody,  we  were  given  a  welcome  to  the  house, 
and  roamed  about  under  the  direction  of  our  guide, 
familiar  to  each  well-kept  apartment.  The  elabo- 
rate carvings  and  adornments  remind  one  of  other 
houses  of  the  time,  where  once  dwelt  those  proud 
families  derisively  spoken  of  as  Tories  ;  yet  they 


were  doubtless  conscientious  in  their  adherence 
to  the  Crown,  but  were,  nevertheless,  ruthlessly 
driven  from  their  homes.  While  the  furnishings 
of  each  apartment  call  forth  our  admiration,  they 
cannot  blind  us  to  those  memories  which  now 
become  a  greater  reality  than  ever  before. 

At  this  hearth-stone  we  see  the  clear  flame  of 
loyalty  fade  away  to  smouldering  embers,  and  at 
length  become  entirely  extinguished.  Through 
the  spacious  hall  below  and  above,  and  over  the 
gently  ascending  staircase,  we  trace  the  foot- 
steps of  Governor  Thomas  Gage.  We  see  him 
in  the  drawing-room  surrounded  by  his  admirers, 
among  whom  is  his  private  secretary,  Thomas 
Flucker,  father-in-law  of  General  Henry  Knox. 
We  watch  him  as,  with  anxiety  stamped  upon  his 
brow,  he  paces  these  rooms  in  waiting  for  the 
troops  ordered  from  Castle  William  in  Boston 
Harbor.  It  must  be  that  he  has  detected  signs 
of  dissatisfaction,  and  concludes  that  his  personal 
safety  depends  upon  an  armed  force.  He  has 
heard  that  the  General  Court  in  session  has  ap- 
pointed five  delegates  to  Philadelphia,  taken  steps 
to  aid  the  suffering  people  in  Boston,  and  also 
determined  to  cut  off  all  importations  of  British 
goods.  He  has  sent  his  secretary  with  a  procla- 
mation dissolving  the  Court,  but  to  his  surprise  he 
finds  that  Samuel  Adams  and  his  associates  had 
already  dissolved  it  without  the  governor's  aid  ; 
and  thus  ended  the  last  General  Court   under   a 


royal  governor  in  the  Massachusetts  Bay  Colony. 
How  much  of  this  Governor  Gage  apprehended 
while  pacing  these  rooms  we  do  not  know  ;  but 
from  the  press  of  that  time  we  learn  :  "■  Last  Thurs- 
day two  companies  of  the  64th  Regiment  arrived 
here  from  Castle  William.  The  next  day  they 
landed,  and  marched  through  the  town  on  the  way 
to  his  Excellency's  seat,  near  which  they  are  now 

As  we  leave  the  mansion,  and  pass  down  the 
avenue,  we  see  in  front  of  us,  on  the  opposite  side 
of  the  road,  the  camping-ground  of  the  redcoats, 
who  were  there  as  the  governor's  guard.  King 
Hooper's  neighbors  were  not  entirely  ignorant  of 
military  life  ;  but  when  they  saw  the  sentinels  pa- 
cing back  and  forth  on  their  own  highway,  and 
saw  the  camp-fires  of  an  enemy  kindled  within  view 
of  their  own  homes,  they  began  more  earnestly  to 
stock  up  with  bullets  and  cartridges,  clean  up  the 
old  muskets,  and  sharpen  the  rusty  swords  which 
for  a  time  had  been  turned  into  pruning-hooks. 

But  it  was  the  people  over  at  Salem  who  caused 
Gage  the  greatest  anxiety.  They  utterly  disre- 
garded his  proclamation,  and,  in  fact,  ordered  him 
to  leave  the  town.  Strange  conduct,  we  may  say, 
for  a  people  towards  their  governor  :  but  we  must 
bear  in  mind  that  they  had  no  voice  in  his  ap- 
pointment ;  and  while  there  was  nothing  disagree- 
able or  despotic  in  him  personally,  he  was  the 
local  representative  of   the  despised   king   across 


the  water.  The  governor's  stay  in  the  country 
was  cut  short  ;  and  on  Saturday,  August  27,  1774, 
he  left  his  Danvers  home,  soon  followed  by  the 
guard,  who  broke  camp,  and  marched  over  the  road 
to  Boston. 

The  most  vivid  reminder  of  the  days  of  Gov- 
ernor Gage  at  the  Hooper  mansion  is  the  bullet- 
hole  in  the  now  abandoned  front  door.  The  good 
people  of  Danvers  have  different  stories  in  regard 
to  this  ;  but  the  more  common  belief  is  that  when 
Provincial  troops  were  marching  by  the  mansion, 
some  of  the  boys  in  homespun  seized  upon  the 
lead  ornaments  of  the  gate-posts,  when  the  master 
of  the  house  opened  the  door,  and  remonstrated  in 
plain  language,  to  which  they  replied  with  a  reck- 
less shot,  which  left  its  mark  in  the  door,  and 
there  still  remains. 

In  leaving  the  temporary  abode  of  Governor 
Gage  and  the  camping-ground  of  his  guard,  we 
instinctively  turn  to  the  home  of  Judge  Samuel 
Holton,^  who,  although  an  undoubted  Whig,  did 
much  to  prevent  an  outbreak  among  his  neighbors 
when  the  royal  governor  was  in  the  town  of  Dan- 
vers. How  different  are  the  feelings  of  the  vis- 
itor when  crossing  the  threshold  of  the  Holton 
house  from  those  experienced  at  the  Hooper  man- 
sion.    No  one  can  doubt  the  patriotism  of  the  oc- 

1  Joseph  Holton  was  the  first  of  the  family  to  settle  in  Salem 
Village,  Danvers,  He  was  succeeded  by  Henry,  Samuel  Sr.,  and 
Samuel  Jr.,  who  was  better  known  as  Doctor  or  Judge  Holton. 

JUDGE   HO L  TON  21  5 

cupants  here  from  the  earliest  clays  of  the  family 
possession.  The  house  is  thought  to  have  been 
built  about  the  year  1650,  and  passing  in  family 
succession  was  the  home  of  Samuel  of  the  fourth 
generation,  who  was  born  here  in  1738,  and  was 
a  practising  physician  in  the  town  when  troubles 
with  the  mother  country  began  to  take  form.  He 
was  their  representative  in  the  General  Court  for 
the  year  1768,  and  was  chosen  to  join  a  conven- 
tion of  delegates  from  the  towns  of  the  Province, 
to  be  held  in  Fanueil  Hall  on  the  twenty-second 
day  of  September.  This  lasted  several  days,  dur- 
ing which  the  difficulties  between  the  Colonies  and 
the  mother  country  were  freely  discussed.  Dr. 
Holton  had  an  active  part  in  this  convention, 
called  by  vote  of  a  Boston  town  meeting  without 
authority  of  the  royal  government.  We  find  him 
also  on  the  town's  Committee  of  Correspondence, 
and  may  well  conclude  that  this  old  house  was  the 
scene  of  many  interesting  discussions,  where  none 
but  patriots  gathered  familiarly  about  this  hearth- 

The  discipline  which  was  undertaken  to  be 
maintained  by  Governor  Gage's  guard  is  inferred 
from  the  record  that  "■  near  the  encampment  was 
a  large  oak-tree,  afterwards  known  as  King 
George's  whipping-post.  When  the  frigate  Essex 
was  built  in  Salem,  the  tree  was  felled  ;  and  on 
hewing  the  timber  the  iron  staple  to  which  the 
soldiers  had   been    confined    for   punishment   was 


found  inbedded  in  the  wood.  King  George's 
whipping-post  was  converted  into  the  stern-post 
of  the  Essex  frigate." 

Very  soon  after  the  departure  of  Gage  and  his 
troops  from  this  neighborhood,  the  people  of  the 
town  assembled  and  instructed  their  representa- 
tive, Dr.  Holton,  as  follows  :  — 

Sir,  —  As  we  have  now  chosen  you  to  Represent  us  in  the 
Great  and  General  Court  to  be  holden  in  Salem  on  Wednes- 
day the  5th  day  of  October  next  ensuing  :  we  do  hereby  In- 
struct you  that  in  all  your  doings  as  a  member  of  the  House 
of  Representatives,  you  adhere  firmly  to  the  Charter  of  this 
Province  granted  by  their  Majesties  King  William  and  Queen 
Mary,  and  that  you  do  no  act  which  can  be  possibly  con- 
strued into  an  Acknowledgment  of  the  Act  of  the  British  Par- 
liament for  Altering  the  government  of  Massachusetts  Bay, 
more  especially  that  you  acknowledge  the  Honorable  Board 
of  Counsellors  Elected  by  the  General  Court  at  their  session 
in  May  last,  as  the  only  rightful  and  constitutional  Council  of 
this  Province.  And  as  we  have  Reason  to  believe  that  a 
Conscientious  Discharge  of  your  Duty  will  produce  your  Dis- 
solution as  an  House  of  Representatives,  we  do  hereby  im- 
power  and  Instruct  you  to  join  with  the  Members  who  may 
be  sent  from  this  and  the  neighboring  Towns  in  the  Province, 
and  meet  with  them  at  a  time  to  be  agreed  on,  in  a  General 
Provincial  Congress,  to  act  upon  such  matters  as  may  come 
before  you,  in  such  a  manner  as  shall  appear  to  be  most  con- 
ducive to  the  true  Interest  of  this  Town  and  Province,  and 
most  likely  to  preserve  the  liberties  of  America 

It  was  on  November  21,  1774,  that  the  govern- 
ment of  England  was  here  practically  repudiated ; 
for  the  town  voted  to  adhere   strictly  to  all  the 

JUDGE   HOLTON  2  1/ 

resolves  and  recommendations  of  the  Provincial 
Congress,  and  Dr.  Holton  was  their  unanimous 
choice  as  representative.  It  was  about  this  time 
that  Dr.  Holton  relinquished  his  profession  and 
private  business,  and  devoted  himself  to  the  ser- 
vice of  his  country.  He  was  chosen  first  major  of 
the  first  regiment  in  Essex.  When  serving  in 
the  Provincial  Cons-ress  he  wrote  a  letter  to  Mr. 
Daniel  Putnam,  from  which  we  gather  much  of 
interest  :  — 

Council  Chamber, 
Monday,  July  15,  1776. 
Sir,  —  When  I  arrived  on  Saturday  last  at  Watertown 
the  Court  was  about  rising,  and  I  had  no  opportunity  to  con- 
verse with  the  members  about  the  town  giving  so  large  a 
bounty.  Therefore  I  can  give  no  advice  about  what  sum  is 
proper  to  give  the  men  that  are  willing  to  go.  But  in  gen- 
eral I  advise  that  the  Resolves  of  the  Court  be  complied  with 
as  far  as  possible,  and  as  soon  as  possible.  What  sum  of 
money  Captain  Flint,  yourself,  and  Lieut.  Putnam  shall 
think  I  ought  to  pay  towards  raising  the  men,  I  shall  en- 
deavor to  comply  with,  but  I  do  not  doubt  you  will  consider 
I  spend  all  my  time  in  the  public  service,  and  have  greatly 
hurt  my  constitution  by  close  application  to  public  business, 
and  an  aged  father  sick,  and  no  help  but  what  I  am  obliged 
to  give  a  great  price  for,  which  makes  it  very  difficult  for 
me  ;  but  I  am  ready  to  spend  my  estate  and  life  for  my  bleed- 
ing country  if  called  to  it.  The  Court  was  prorogued  on 
Saturday  last  to  the  last  Wednesday  of  August,  but  last 
evening  an  Express  arrived  here  from  the  Honorable  Con- 
gress, and  another  Express  from  Gen.  Washington.  The 
Congress  have  sent  us  their  Declaration,  declaring  the  Colo- 
nies independent  States  ;  and  the  General  informs  us  of  his 


ordering  three  of  the  Regiments  of  the  Continental  troops 
at  or  near  Boston  to  march  immediately  to  Ticonderoga,  so 
that  I  suppose  the  Court  must  be  called  together  again  im- 
mediately. Give  my  kind  regards  to  Capt.  Flint  and  Lieut. 
Putnam,  and  let  them  know  from  me  that  I  desire  them  to 
'xert  themselves  for  their  distressed  country,  for  we  have 
everything  to  get  or  everything  to  lose.  We  have  not  a  day 
to  lose,  no,  not  even  an  hour.  Independency  is  the  best 
news  I  ever  heard,  and  as  I  trust  our  cause  is  just,  we  ought 
to  put  our  trust  in  the  God  of  Armies,  and  not  fear  what 
man  can  do  in  an  unjust  cause.  I  am,  Sir,  with  great  regard, 
Your  humble  Servant, 

S.  HoLTON,  Jr. 
Mr.  Daniel  Putnam. 

We  see  by  this  letter  that  Samuel  Holton  was 
ready  to  redeem  the  pledge  to  give  life  and  for- 
tune if  needful.  We  find  him  in  the  Continental 
Congress  for  a  period  of  five  years  ;  a  member  of 
the  Constitutional  Convention  ;  two  years  in  the 
United  States  Congress  ;  Representative  to  the 
General  Court  eight  years  ;  five  years  a  senator, 
and  twelve  years  a  councillor,  and  twice  presiden- 
tial elector.  He  was  for  thirty-two  years  Judge 
of  the  Court  of  Common  Pleas  ;  thirty-five  years 
Judge  of  the  Court  of  General  Sessions  ;  fifteen 
years  Chief  Justice  ;  nineteen  years  Judge  of  the 
Probate  Court  for  Essex  County ;  and  twenty-four 
years  town  treasurer. 

It  is  indeed  becoming  for  us  to  make  this  halt 
at  the  home  of  a  man  who  served  his  town  and 
country  so  well,  and   while   passing   through  the 

RECENT  HONORS    TO   SAMUEL    HO L  TON      219 

rooms  sacred  to  his  memory  make  anew  our  reso- 
lutions for  good  citizenship. 

Simple  indeed  is  the  slab  erected  on  the  grave 
of  this  faithful  man,  who  lived  to  fully  enjoy  that 
freedom  for  whicl>  he  labored  and  sacrificed.  He 
died  January  2,  18 16,  aged  seventy-eight  years. 

"  Peace  to  the  Memory  of  a  Man  of  Peace.' 

On  October  19,  1895,  the  sons  of  the  American 
Revolution  of  Massachusetts,  together  with  the 
children  of  the  American  Revolution  of  Danvers, 
gathered  about  the  grave  of  "  Hon.  Samuel  Hol- 
ton,"  and  there  placed  the  marker  of  the  "  S.  A.  R," 
and  held  a  patriotic  service.  Holton  Street  and 
high  school  are  reminders  of  this  noted  son  of  the 
town  of  Danvers. 

We  have  thus  far  traced  the  footprints  of  four 
of  the  Danvers  companies  to  the  homes  of  their 
captains,  and  we  naturally  desire  to  locate  the  re- 
maining four.  South  Danvers,  near  Salem,  was 
the  home  of  Captain  Caleb  Lowe,  who  with  twenty- 
two  neighbors  marched  to  Menotomy  and  Cam- 
bridge on  April  19.  They  are  credited  with  fifty 
miles  of  travel,  and  two  days'  service  on  the  Lex- 
ington Alarm  List.  Captain  Lowe  became  major, 
and  was  in  command  under  Washington  on  the 
Hudson  River.  It  is  apparent  that  he  had  the 
confidence  of  the  commander-in-chief,  who  on  his 
return  from  Connecticut  in  September,  1780,  ad- 


dressed  a  letter  to  him.  The  circumstances  were 
briefly  as  follows  :  Washington,  accompanied  by 
General  Knox,  Lafayette,  and  other  officers  of 
his  suite,  made  a  visit  to  the  Count  Rochambeau 
and  the  Chevalier  de  Ternay  at  Hartford,  where 
they  arranged  plans  for  their  next  campaign  ;  and 
on  their  return  discovered  that  General  Arnold, 
in  command  at  West  Point,  had  plotted  treason 
with  Major  Andre,  adjutant-general  of  the  Brit- 
ish *army.  The  plans  had  failed  ;  Andre  was  cap- 
tured, but  Arnold  escaped,  and  there  was  not  a 
little  confusion  in  the  army.  When  such  a  man 
as  Arnold,  a  hero  of  Ticonderoga  in  the  first  of 
the  war,  had  proved  false,  Washington  must  have 
been  in  doubt  as  to  who  was  worthy  of  confi- 
dence, but  found  in  Caleb  Lowe  a  faithful  officer. 
The  original  letter,  now  in  possession  of  the  Dan- 
vers  Historical  Society,  reads  as  follows  :  — 

Sir,  You  will  be  pleased  to  march  early  to-morrow  morn- 
ing with  all  the  militia  under  your  command  and  proceed  to 
the  landing  at  West  Point.  You  will  send  an  officer  on  to 
this  place,  by  whom  you  will  receive  further  orders.  Colonel 
Gouvior  the  bearer  of  this  will  apply  to  you  for  an  officer 
and  a  small  party  of  men.  These  you  will  furnish. 
I  am  sir  with  esteem  Yr  mo  ob'et  Servt, 

Go.  Washington. 
Head  Quarters,  Robinson's  House, 

25th  Sept.,  1780,  1-2  after  7  o'clock  p.m. 
Major  Low,  at  Fishkill. 

With  the  original  letter  in  my  hand,  there  came 
to  me  as  never  before  a  realizing  sense  of  the  sor- 


row  that  burdened  the  heart  of  Washington  when 
penning  the  lines,  and  later  when  on  October  2, 
17S0,  the  rules  of  war  were  carried  out,  and  the 
handsome,  amiable  young  British  officer  suffered 
death  by  hanging  at  Tappan  in  the  State  of  New 

Samuel  Flint,  another  of  the  Danvers  captains, 
with  forty-five  men,  is  credited  with  forty  miles  of 
travel.  An  officer  once  asked  Captain  Flint  where 
he  could  be  found  on  a  certain  occasion.  His  reply 
was,  *'  Where  the  enemy  is,  there  will  you  meet 
me."  Captain  Flint  was  in  the  army  at  the  siege 
of  Boston,  and  was  later  killed  at  the  head  of  his 
company  at  Stillwater,  October  7,  1777.  He  was 
the  only  officer  from  Danvers  who  perished  in 
the  Revolution. 

Asa  Prince,  with  thirty-five  men,  was  at  Lexing- 
ton ;  and  his  company  is  credited  with  fifty  niiles 
of  travel.  He  was  also  at  Bunker  Hill  and  at 
Lake  George.  On  June  17,  when  attempting  to 
cross  the  Neck  when  the  cannon-balls  were  flying 
from  a  British  frigate,  he  dislocated  his  ankle,  but 
hastily  put  the  bone  back  into  the  socket,  and 
went  on  his  way. 

Captain  John  Putnam  was  at  the  head  of  an 
Alarm  Company  consisting  of  thirty-five  men, 
seven  of  whom  were  Putnams.  They  travelled 
forty  miles,  and  served  like  the  rest  two  days. 
On  the  grave-stone  erected  to  the  memory  of  a 
Danvers  patriot  we  read:  — 




Who  Died  Sept.   i6,  1799.     Aged  63  Years. 

An  Officer  under  the  Immortal  Washington. 

This  modest  stone^  -what  few  vain  mortals  can, 
May  truly  say:  Here  lies  an  Honest  rnan. 

Gideon  Foster,  who  reached  the  rank  of  major- 
general,  lived  until  1845.  There  are  those  in 
Danvers  to-day  who  with  pride  recall  their  many 
conversations  with  General  Foster,  the  comrade 
of  Warren  and  Prescott  and  Stark,  and  one  who 
had  held  official  intercourse  with  Ward,  Putnam, 
and  Washington.  They  repeat  the  story  of  Gen- 
eral Foster  as  he  gave  it  on  the  occasion  of  laying 
the  cornerstone  of  the  Revolutionary  monument 
in  Danvers. 

*'  I  was  then  twenty -six  years  of  age.  About 
ten  days  before  I  had  been  chosen  to  command 
a  company  of  minute-men,  who  were  at  all  times 
to  be  in  readiness  at  a  moment's  warning.  They 
were  so  ready.  They  all  assembled  on  the  very 
spot  where  we  are  this  day  assembled  ;  they  all 
went;  and  in  about  four  hours  from  the  time  of 
meeting,  they  travelled  on  foot  (full  half  the  way 
upon  the  run)  sixteen  miles,  and  saluted  the  en- 
emy. This  they  did  most  effectually,  as  the  records 
of  that  day  most  clearly  prove.  I  discharged  my 
musket  at  the  enemy  a  number  of  times  (I  think 
eleven),  with  two  balls  each  time,  and  with  well- 
directed  aim.     My  comrade,  Mr.   Cleaves  of  Bev- 


erly,  who  was  then  standing  by  my  side,  had  his 
finger  and  ramrod  cut  away  by  a  shot  from  the 
enemy.  Whether  my  shots  took  effect  I  cannot 
say  ;  but  this  I  can  say,  if  they  did  not,  it  was  not 
for  the  want  of  determined  purpose  in  him  who 
sent  them." 

Captain  Gideon  Foster's  company  was  stationed 
at  Little  Cambridge  (Brighton)  at  the  time  of 
the  battle  of  Bunker  Hill.  He  was  ordered  by 
General  Ward  to  escort  a  load  of  ammunition  to 
Charlestown.  He  met  the  Americans  when  on 
their  retreat,  and  supplied  them  with  powder  for 
one  more  attempt.  This  is  the  account,  ''  We 
took  the  ammunition  in  casks,  and  conveyed  it  in 
wagons,  and  delivered  it  freely,  with  our  hands 
and  our  dippers,  to  their  horns,  their  pockets,  their 
hats,  and  whatever  else  they  had  that  would  hold 
it.  I  well  remember  the  blackened  appearance  of 
those  busy  in  this  work,  not  unlike  those  engaged 
in  the  delivery  of  coal  on  a  hot  summer's  day.  At 
the  same  time  we  were  thus  occupied,  the  enemy's 
shot  were  continually  whistling  by  ;  bufwe  had  no 
time  to  examine  their  character  or  dimensions." 



THE      STORY     OF      DILL,     A     NEGRO     SLAVE    IN     THE 

The  willows  had  put  forth  their  downy  catkins, 
the  blue-birds  and  robins  were  abroad  in  the  fields, 
and  all  nature  had  said  farewell  to  grim  winter. 
The  spring  of  1766  was  so  far  advanced  that  in 
early  April  Mrs.  Jeremiah  Page  ventured  to  allow 
her  group  of  little  ones  to  play  out  in  the  gar- 
den a  few  hours  each  sunny  day.  What  a  merry 
group  they  were,  six  bright-eyed  little  children  ! 
and  what  a  relief  to  the  mother  when  she  could 
safely  allow  them  to  be  out-of-doors,  after  the  long 
winter,  when  amusement  had  to  be  furnished  in 
the  limited  apartments  of  the  home,  which,  how- 
ever, compared  favorably  with  any  of  the  farm- 
houses of  the  day.  To  be  sure,  Sarah,  the  eldest 
and  namesake  of  the  mother,  now  fifteen  years  of 
age,  assumed  not  a  little  of  the  care  ;  but  with  the 
opening  spring  came  her  opportunity  for  attend- 
ing school,  and  neither  Jeremiah  Page  nor  his  wife 
would  allow  anything  to  keep  her  from  the  few 
weeks  of  schooling  furnished  for  the  girls  of  the 
town.     The  girls  must  be  able  to  read  and  write; 

IN   THE   PAGE   HOME  225 

and  the  Pages,  who  were  in  advance  of  some  of 
the  people,  were  desirous  that  their  daughters 
should  know  a  little  ''reckoning."  ''It  won't 
come  amiss,"  said  the  father,  when  being  charged 
with  trying  "  to  tiptoe"  his  girls  above  the  neigh- 
bors. Hannah,  the  baby,  was  less  than  a  year  and 
a  half,  while  the  birthdays  of  the  other  four  ranged 
between  1751  and  this  spring-time. 

The  fond  parents  stood  one  day  at  the  south 
window  of  the  best  room  looking  at  the  merry 
group,  while,  like  so  many  samples  of  perpetual 
motion,  they  were  amusing  themselves  around  the 
trunk  of  the  elm  whose  buds  were  already  swollen 
to  burstinsf. 

Just  then  there  came  a  cry  of  alarm.  Lydia, 
who  had  been  too  ambitious,  stumbled,  and  was 
trampled  upon  by  her  eager  pursuer.  There  was 
no  one  but  mother  who  had  the  balm  for  every 
wound  of  flesh  or  mind,  and  she  was  as  prompt  to 
respond  as  were  the  children  to  give  the  alarm. 
Having  effectually  applied  the  remedy  and  set  all 
to  rights,  she  rejoined  her  husband,  who  now  be- 
gan to  realize  as  never  before  the  cares  which 
each  day  brought  to  his  faithful  wife.  The  illness 
which  had  detained  Mr.  Page  from  his  brick-yard 
for  that  one  day  had  afforded  an  opportunity 
which  the  early  morning  and  late  evening  hours 
had  not  granted  him. 

"  Wife,  you  must  have  more  assistance,"  said 
Jeremiah  Page.     "  I  see  these  burdens  are  wear- 


ing  upon  yon.  We  need  a  younger  *slave.  Dinah 
is  too  old  and  clumsy  to  keep  an  eye  out  for  those 
children,  and  catch  them  when  they  run  away 
from  the  house  as  they  are  bound  to  do." 

At  this  serious  moment  of  parental  discussion, 
black  Dinah  came  rolling  into  the  room.  She  had 
overheard  the  charge  as  to  her  abilities,  and  lost 
no  time  to  vindicate  herself. 

**  Lor's  sake,  Massa  Page,"  exclaimed  Dinah, 
"I  car  for  dem  ar  chillen  jest  as  well  as  ever  I 
did.  I  lubs  every  one  on  'em,  specially  Han- 
nah ; "  at  the  same  time  stooping  to  the  babe, 
whom  she  grabbed  up,  and  covering  its  little  rosy 
cheeks  with  audible  kisses  from  her  great  lips, 
she  waddled  away. 

"  Dinah  is  willing  and  faithful  as  far  as  she  can 
be,"  said  Mr.  Page,  standing  in  the  centre  of  the 
room,  and  looking  towards  the  door  which  Dinah 
had  just  closed  behind  her  and  the  youngest  of 
the  group ;  "  but  she  would  be  of  more  use  in 
some  family  where  she  could  sit  in  the  chimney- 
corner  and  knit.  She's  become  too  large  for  us. 
I  must  trade  her  off.  The  first  day  I'm  down  to 
Salem  I'm  going  to  see  if  Tapley  has  any  fresh 
stock  on  hand.  It's  time  for  some  spring  black- 
birds from  Guinea  to  be  in."  Mrs.  Page  agreed 
with  her  husband  as  to  her  needs,  though  she 
rather  disliked  to  part  with  her  good  cook  ;  but 
like  a  dutiful  wife  (particularly  of  those  times) 
listened   to    the    reasoning    of   her   husband,   the 


head  of  the  family,  and  quietly  assented  to  his 
further  remarks  in  regard  to  domestic  service. 
"These  black  women  depreciate  in  value  very 
rapidly  after  they  reach  middle  life.  Dinah  is 
as  large  as  two  now,  and  takes  up  lots  of  room. 
I  know  the  children  are  attached  to  her,  but 
they'll  soon  learn  to  like  a  young  and  lively  girl." 

It  is  evident  that  Jeremiah  Page  ruled  in  his 
family  affairs  as  well  as  in  his  brick-yards,  but  he 
had  a  most  tender  regard  for  the  wife  of  his  youth 
and  mother  of  his  children.  Now  that  he  had 
learned  from  personal  observation  what  her  daily 
cares  were,  he  was  bent  upon  relieving  her. 

Had  this  family  been  the  only  one  in  the  pos- 
session of  slaves,  here  would  be  a  time  to  pause 
and  interject  a  series  of  execrations  ;  but  the 
course  pursued  in  this  family  was  such  as  the 
customs  of  the  time  approved.  The  families  in 
the  highest  walks  of  society  were  the  most  thor- 
oughly equipped  with  colored  slaves,  or  servants 
as  they  were  sometimes  called.  Slaves  of  both 
sexes  were  generally  found  in  the  families  of 
the  clergy,  and  it  was  no  uncommon  thing  for  a 
people  to  present  a  slave  to  their  pastor  as  an 
act  of  tender  regard. 

The  Rev.  John  Hancock  of  Lexington,  grand- 
father of  John  Hancock  the  patriot,  received  such 
a  gift  from  his  church  ;  Rev.  Joseph  Sewall  of  the 
Old  South  Church,  Boston,  was  similarly  remem- 
bered ;  Rev.  Joseph  Emerson  of  Maiden,  father  of 


Rev.  William  Emerson  of  Concord,  had  his  slave, 
but  whether  acquired  by  purchase  or  gift  is  not 
known.  Rev.  Samuel  Moody  of  York,  Maine,  says 
by  letter  to  his  granddaughter  Hannah,  daughter 
of  Rev.  Joseph  Emerson,  — 

''  My  love  to  your  brothers  and  sisters,  not  for- 
getting Dinah  ;  she  also  is  espoused  to  Christ  in 
her  Baptism,  and  she  must  love,  honor,  and  obey 
ye  Lord." 

Colonel  Page  made  repeated  trips  to  Salem,  but 
found  no  negroes  on  sale  who  gave  promise  of 
what  he  needed ;  so  he  left  his  order  with  John 
Tapley,  who  agreed  to  notify  him  of  the  arrival  of 
the  first  freight  from  Africa  in  which  there  were 
any  negroes  likely  to  answer  his  purpose. 

It  was  on  the  morning  of  April  19,  1766,  that 
the  colonel  rose  from  the  breakfast-table,  lathered 
and  shaved,  called  for  his  surtout,  and  said  by 
way  of  explanation,  ''  Tapley  has  sent  up  word  by 
Putnam  that  he's  got  some  fresh  African  stock 
that'll  just  suit  me  ;  so  I'm  going  down  before  I 
go  over  to  the  yard.  If  any  one  calls,  tell  'em  I'll 
be  home  before  noon,"  with  this  he  mounted  his 
horse  and  galloped  off. 

Mr.  Page  was  a  business  man,  and  not  long 
about  a  trade  when  he  found  what  he  wanted. 
"  In  bonds  yet,  are  they  1  "  he  asked,  as  he  strode 
about  the  storehouse  at  Tapley's  wharf  among  the 
casks  of  wine,  molasses,  rum,  and  an  occasional 
negro.     ''  Yes ;  but  I'll  have  off  the  duties  quick 


enough,  if  you  want  them.  Fine  family,  I  tell 
you  ;  young  to  be  sure,  but  they'll  improve  every 
day,  and  not  be  going  the  other  way  like  that  old 
wench  of  yours,"  replied  Tapley,  as  he  hustled  his 
human  goods  about  to  make  them  show  off  in 
a  favorable  manner.  ''It's  a  trade,"  said  Page, 
with  an  air  of  business  such  as  characterized  all 
his  proceedings  at  the  market.  ''  Make  out  your 
bill.  Here's  your  money,  and  Putnam  will  make 
the  exchange."  While  Tapley 's  bookkeeper  was 
making  out  the  receipt.  Colonel  Page  counted  out 
the  cash.  The  business  done,  Jeremiah  Page 
mounted  his  restless  steed,  and  would  have  been 
off,  had  not  the  merchant  called  him  to  a  halt  by 
saying,  "  What  do  you  suppose  they'll  try  on  us 
next,  another  Stamp  Act,  or  what.'*"  The  pro- 
ceedings of  Parliament  affected  every  business 
man  ;  and  Colonel  Page  was  not  without  an  inter- 
est in  them,  although  he  was  engaged  in  the 
manufacture  of  bricks.  *'  Things  look  a  little 
cloudy.  If  his  Majesty  expects  to  make  us  pay 
the  expense  of  the  French  wars,  besides  fighting 
and  sacrificing  as  we  did,  I'm  afraid  he'll  find  we 
shall  protest  pretty  strongly."  With  these  words, 
uttered  wnth  a  deal  of  emphasis,  the  customer 
mounted  his  horse,  and  was  off  towards  his  Dan- 
vers  home. 

It  was  a  full  hour  before  noon  that  he  drove 
into  the  yard,  dismounted,  entered  the  house,  laid 
aside  his  surtout,  took  from  his  waistcoat  pocket 


the  legal  evidence  of  his  trade,  and  announced 
to  Mrs.  Page  that  he  had  made  a  swap,  saying, 
"  You'll  soon  have  t}i7re  instead  of  one,  and  alto- 
gether they  won't  take  up  as  much  room  as  Dinah 
does."     And  he  read  aloud  the  following  :  — 

Danvers,  Apr.  19,  1766. 

Rec'd  of  Mr.  Jeremiah  Page,  Fifty  eight  pounds  thirteen 
shillings  and  four  pence  lawfull  money  and  a  negro  woman 
called  Dinah,  which  is  in  full  for  a  negro  woman  called 
Combo  and  a  negro  girl  called  Gate,  and  a  negro  child  called 
Deliverance  or  Dill,  which  I  now  sell  and  Deliver  to  ye  said 
Jeremiah  Page.  j^^^  Tapley. 

JON^  Bancroft, 

EzerL  Marsh. 

The  prospect  of  more  assistance  in  her  family 
was  cheering  to  the  over-burdened  housekeeper, 
yet  she  disliked  to  part  with  Dinah.  But  before 
she  had  time  to  reconcile  her  mind  to  the  thought, 
Putnam  stopped  his  ox-team  at  the  door,  and 
shouted,  "Here's  your  slaves!"  And  with  the 
same  breath  said  to  the  living  portion  of  his  load, 
*'  Get  off,  ye  darkies  !  here's  your  new  home."  The 
farmer's  words  were  unintelligible  to  the  family ; 
but  his  gestures,  with  ox-whip  in  hand,  were  un- 
derstood by  the  trio,  and  they  were  soon  at  the 
threshold  of  the  Page  mansion. 

Dinah  was  at  once  sent  to  the  loft  to  locate  the 
new-comers,  and  manifested  much  pleasure  upon 
having  in  her  apartment  of  the  Page  home  an  ad- 


dition  of  three  from  her  own  country.  It  was  with 
difficulty  that  she  could  make  them  understand 
her  words,  for  she  had  been  so  long  with  English- 
speaking  people  that  she  had  lost  her  native 

As  Tapley  allowed  but  little  for  Dinah,  he  was 
not  particular  to  have  her  sent  down  at  once  ;  and 
she  remained  for  some  days  before  Putnam  called 
to  take  her  to  the  merchant's  office. 

''How  do  you  like  them,  wife.-*"  inquired  Jere- 
miah Page,  when  returning  at  night  from  the 
brick-yard.  ''  Rather  awkward,  surely.  Still,  I 
think  Combo  is  tractable,  and  as  for  Gate,  she's 
only  a  girl,  but  Dill  is  so  young  she  is  little  more 
than  a  bother  at  present."  —  "I  know  that,"  re- 
plied the  head  of  the  family,  as  he  drew  up  to  the 
tea-table;  ''but  these  will  improve  with  age,  while 
Dinah  is  too  old  for  that,  you  know.  I  thouo;ht 
I'd  take  the  little  one  —  I  didn't  want  to  see  them 
separated ;  and  then,  she'll  be  a  good  thing  for 
our  children  to  play  with  till  she  gets  old  enough 
for  service.  I  made  a  good  trade  with  Tapley. 
He  didn't  want  the  youngster  round." 

"If  they  are  just  from  Africa,  there  is  a  good 
deal  of  uncertainty  about  their  living  until  they 
become  useful.  We  do  not  know  what  effect  our 
climate  will  have  on  them,"  remarked  Mrs.  Page, 
who  did  not  regard  the  trade  as  favorably  as  her 
husband  represented,  but  she  resolved  to  make 
the  best  of  it. 


Combo,  the  mother,  soon  learned,  through  the 
patience  of  Mrs.  Page,  to  do  many  things  ;  and 
Gate  was  useful  in  watching  the  children  and 
looking  after  her  little  sister  Deliverance,  who 
for  short  was  called  Dill.  They  promised  well 
through  the  heated  season ;  but  when  the  cold 
weather  of  winter  settled  down  upon  them,  it 
was  more  than  their  constitutions  could  endure, 
and  before  another  spring  Combo  and  Cate  were 
charged  off  to  the  profit-and-loss  account  on  Jere- 
miah Pas-e's  ledo^er. 

The  family  were  now  in  a  more  unfortunate 
condition  than  when  Mr.  Page  decided  to  make 
a  change.  Dinah  could  not  be  traced,  or  she 
would  have  been  brought  back,  if  money  could  do 
it.  As  for  Dill,  she  was  too  young  to  be  of  any 
help,  but  had  proved  to  be  uncommonly  tractable  ; 
and  Mrs.  Page  was  bent  upon  giving  her  a  good 
training  in  culinary  matters.  ''  I  sha'n't  try  any 
more  of  them  unless  they  are  acclimated,"  said 
Jeremiah  Page  one  day,  half  aloud,  as  he  sat  bal- 
ancing his  accounts.  Thoughtfully  folding  the  bill 
of  sale,  and  placing  it  in  his  great  file  for  the  year 
1766,  he  added,  ''Poor  investment  that." 

New  cares  now  began  to  engross  the  attention 
of  the  brickmaker.  The  Stamp  Act  had  been 
passed  and  repealed.  The  people  of  Danvers,  like 
all  the  patriots,  were  filled  with  anxiety.  Jere- 
miah Page  was  as  bitter  against  taxation  without 
representation  as  were  any  of  his  neighbors,  and 


he  feared  that  something  would  be  done  to  injure 
his  business.  He  heartily  indorsed  the  non-im- 
portation agreement,  and  strongly  forbade  the  use 
of  tea  in  his  house.  But  Mrs.  Page,  who  lacked 
nothing  in  the  way  of  patriotism  as  she  regarded 
it,  saw  no  harm  in  using  the  supply  she  had  in  the 
house,  and  decided  to  have  a  social  sip  without 
violating  the  letter  of  the  family  edict. 

Dill  became  accustomed  to  the  New  England 
climate,  and  developed  into  a  useful  servant  by 
the  time  the  Revolution  began  to  absorb  the  at- 
tention of  the  people;  but  it  is  doubtful  if  she 
played  the  part  in  the  tea-party  on  the  roof  which 
Miss  Larcom  assigns  to  her.  The  minor  duties 
so  early  allotted  to  Dill  no  doubt  included  that 
of  polishing  her  master's  buttons,  when  in  1773 
he  was  made  a  captain  of  the  militia.  With  what 
pride  she  must  have  looked  upon  her  master, 
dressed  in  his  military  garments,  set  off  with  the 
white  ruffles  that  she  had  so  deftly  crimped,  when 
all  ready  to  start  to  a  meeting  of  the  patriots  down 
at  Salem !  And  how  much  greater  her  pride  must 
have  been  when  ''Massa  Gage"  occupied  the  front 
room,  and  passed  in  and  out  attired  in  the  brilliant 
costume  befitting  the  kind's  governor  of  the  Prov- 

It  was  on  the  ninth  anniversary  of  the  coming 
of  Combo,  Gate,  and  Dill  to  the  Page  home  that 
Gaptain  Jeremiah  Page  responded  to  a  hasty  alarm, 
and  marched  off  to  intercept  the  army  of  the  king. 


From  that  time  forth  there  were  heated  discussions 
in  the  home ;  and  Dill's  interest  in  the  family 
caused  her  no  little  anxiety,  although  she  had  no 
adequate  appreciation  of  the  occasion  of  the  dis- 
turbance. She  met  her  first  real  grief  when  her 
mistress  died  on  March  i,  1776,  and  she  was  sub- 
jected to  a  new  mistress. 

Dill  heard  much  talk  about  the  Declaration  of 
Independence,  but  was  far  from  comprehending 
its  significance.  Her  lot  had  fortunately  been 
cast  among  good  people,  and  she  had  no  thought 
of  any  liberty  which  she  had  not  always  enjoyed. 
The  younger  children  of  the  family  clung  to  her 
more  closely  now  that  their  mother  was  gone. 
Dill  manifested  an  interest  in  those  under  her 
charge  only  surpassed  by  a  mother's  affection  :  she 
romped  with  them  in  the  garden,  fondled  them  in 
her  arms  by  the  family  hearth-stone,  dried  their 
innocent  tears,  and  seemed  like  one  of  them. 
And  Dill  was  contented  in  her  ignorance  until 
she  was  shown  that  the  Declaration  of  Indepen- 
dence, which  brought  cheer  to  her  master,  and  to 
maintain  which  he  fought  and  sacrificed,  had  a 
meaning  for  her,  although  she  was  black  and  had 
been  purchased  by  Jeremiah  Page's  money. 

She  was  yet  in  her  "teens  "  when  the  Constitu- 
tion of  the  State  was  adopted,  and  the  people  said, 
"  All  men  are  born  free  and  equal,  etc." 

It  was  some  years  before  Dill  left  the  Page 
family,  and  then  her  going  was  more  like  that  of 



a  daughter,  who  having  attained  her  majority  and 
reciprocated  the  affections  of  a  worthy  man,  ex- 
changed the  paternal  home  for  that  of  one  of  her 
own  choice  in  which  she  was  to  preside  as  mis- 

Slaves  who  took  their  freedom,  and  others  who 
remained  with  their  masters  and  mistresses,  were 
very  numerous  in  Sa- 
lem, and  Dill  naturally 
cast  in  her  lot  with 
the  people  at  the  sea- 
port. There  were 
many  Caesars  among 
them,  and  to  prevent 
confusion  they  were 
known  by  the  sur- 
name of  their  respec- 
tive masters.  It  was 
Caesar  Symonds  who 
won  the  affections  of 
"  Deliverance  Page  " 
the  marriage  records 
of  Salem  attest. 

The  new  responsibilities  assumed  by  Dill  were 
not  so  absorbing  as  to  cause  her  to  forget  the 
people  and  the  home  which  she  had  left,  neither 
was  she  forgotten  by  the  Page  family.  Seldom 
did  they  visit  the  port  without  seeking  out  the 
little  black  house  in  North  Salem  where  their  old 
servant  presided  as  mistress.    Bundles  and  baskets 

Dill's  Daughter,  Anstiss 



were  continually  left  at  the  cottage  door,  and  each 
recurring  Thanksgiving  brought  cheer  to  the  Page 
family  as  they  carried  cheer  to  the  hearts  of  Dill 
and  her  children.  As  each  of  the  children  of 
Jeremiah  Page  established  homes  for  themselves,  a 

St.  Peter's  Church  at  Salem 

new  channel  of  supply  was  created  for  the  increas- 
ing family  at  Salem.  The  visiting  children  took 
delight  with  those  of  black  faces,  and  in  listening 
to  the  chatter  of  a  parrot,  which  in  summer  was 
kept  in  a  green  cage  hanging  from  a  limb  of  a 
willow-tree  near  the  door  of  the  humble  home  of 
the  Symonds  family.     Dill  never  failed  to  make 


regular  visits  to  the  Page  home  until  old  age 
settled  down  upon  hen 

She  was  tali  and  erect  in  stature,  and  when 
dressed  as  her  taste  directed,  with  bright  yellow 
turban,  gold  ear-hoops,  and  bright  plaid  shawl,  had 
every  appearance  of  an  African  princess.  Her 
presence,  together  with  that  of  her  daughters 
Hannah  and  Anstiss,  brought  pleasure  to  the 
Danvers  home,  where  the  grandchildren  of  Jere- 
miah Page  kept  up  the  family  interest. 

In  the  great  company  assembled  on  a  June  day 
of  1805  to  honor  the  memory  of  a  noted  man, 
there  were  seen  no  faces  more  tearful  than  those 
of  Deliverance  Symonds  and  her  daughters.  All 
the  words  of  eulogy  from  eloquent  lips  over  the 
remains  of  Colonel  Jeremiah  Page  could  not  out- 
weigh the  half-audible  sentence,  "  He  was  a  good 
man,"  uttered  by  the  black  woman  who  lingered 
by  the  bier  of  her  master  and  benefactor. 

It  was  nearly  a  half  century  later  when  in 
Salem  a  little  company  of  people,  chiefly  colored, 
bore  the  form  of  a  nonagenarian  through  the  aisle 
of  St.  Peter's  Church  ;  and  among  all  who  gave 
reverent  heed  to  the  rector's  words,  "■  I  am  the 
resurrection  and  the  life,"  were  noticed  members 
of  the  Page  family  of  Danvers,  who  had  seen  in 
the  departed  an  innocent  slave,  an  honest  ser- 
vant, a  faithful  wife,  a  devoted  mother,  and  a 
sincere  Christian. 





HENRY     S.     PERHAM.  POSITIVE     ACTS     OF     THE 







Chelmsford  is  one  of  the  trio  of  towns  which 
received  the  seal  of  incorporation  on  May  29,  1655  ; 
Concord  had  preceded  them  by  twenty  years,  and 
Woburn  by  thirteen  years.  Previous  to  this  date 
Woburn  and  Concord  were  the  nearest  to  this  set- 
tlement ;  but  subsequently  Billerica  was  the  near- 
est neighbor,  and  Groton,  the  other  of  the  three, 
was  not  far  away.  But  civilization  had  pushed  its 
way  into  this  wilderness  before  the  towns  were 
granted  a  corporate  existence.  The  men  who  first 
took  action  towards  a  settlement  of  the  tract  "  ly- 

1  This  town  included  Lowell  for  many  years  after  the  Revolu- 
tion, and  the  footprints  of  the  early  patriots  in  that  now  busy  city 
will  be  traced  in  this  connection. 


ing  on  the  other  [west]  side  of  Concord  River  " 
were  from  Concord  and  Woburn  ;  and  their  names 
have  been  continued  in  the  town  through  all  the 
years  of  the  history  of  Chehiisford,  and  they  are 
honored  among  the  early  and  later  patriots. 

As  it  was  a  frontier  settlement,  it  was  soon 
found  expedient  to  take  precautions  against  In- 
dian attacks,  although  they  had  lived  at  peace  for 
a  score  of  years  with  the  Wamesits,  or  Pawtuckets, 
who  were  their  near  neighbors.  But  during  that 
general  uprising,  King  Philip's  war,  the  settlers 
in  Chelmsford  were  not  entirely  exempt  from  trou- 
ble, yet  they  suffered  much  less  than  many  fron- 
tier towns.  Some  years  before  these  hostilities 
had  begun,  the  Chelmsford  men  took  precautions 
peculiar  to  the  time.  Divine  worship  was  their 
chief  concern,  and  they  naturally  adopted  meas- 
ures to  prevent  being  attacked  and  overcome  while 
assembled  at  the  meeting-house  on  the  Sabbath. 
The  following  appears  upon  the  records :  — 

25  the  5  motli.  1671.  It  is  ordered  by  the  selectmen  For 
Severall  Considerations  espetialy  for  the  preseruation  of  peace, 
That  with  in  one  month  after  the  Date  hear  of  Eury  every 
malle  person  with  in  our  towne  above  the  Age  of  fiveteen  years 
shall  provid  a  good  Clube  of  fouer  or  five  foote  in  lingth  with 
a  Knobe  in  the  end,  and  to  bring  the  same  to  the  metting 
house  ther  to  leave  the  Same  vntill  vntill  ocation  fore  use  of 
it  be  (found,  etc.) 

The  name  of  the  Rest  By 

Samuel  Adams, 



Other  precautions  followed,  such  as  the  erection 
of  a  strong  house  on  an  eminence  now  known 
as  Robins  Hill.  Several  garrisons  were  built  in 
1675  ;  and  their  identity  is  not  entirely  obliterated, 
as  we  shall  see  in  our  circuit  of  the  town  in  quest 
of  the  footprints  of  Chelmsford  patriots. 

This  town  had  been  making  a  noteworthy  rec- 
ord for  one  hundred  and  twenty  years  before  the 
Revolution  burst  upon  the  Colonies.  During  the 
greater  portion  of  this  time  the  people  had  been 
in  more  or  less  military  service,  and  were  not  un- 
prepared for  the  struggle  for  independence.  New 
people  had  joined  the  first  settlers  ;  and  their  de- 
scendants, with  those  of  the  pioneers,  had  been 
wisely  guided  by  devout  pastors,  three  of  whom 
had  done  their  work  and  been  laid  to  rest,  and  a 
fourth,  Rev.  Ebenezer  Bridge,  was  settled  as  the 
pastor  in  1741.  These  clergymen  had  been  closely 
identified  with  the  military  interests  of  the  town, 
according  to  the  custom  throughout  the  Colonies. 
The  fourth  minister's  journal  bears  witness  to  his 
faithfulness  in  this  direction  ;  and  his  Artillery 
Election  Sermon  of  June  i,  1752,  is  largely  de- 
voted to  showing  the  consistency  of  military  life 
with  the  profession  and  practice  of  Christianity. 

Rev.  Mr.  Bridge  had  been  in  service  in  the 
town  thirty-four  years  when  he  was  called  upon  to 
take  a  stand  with  the  king  or  against  him.  This 
must  have  occasioned  many  a  severe  struggle  in 
his  honest  breast ;  for  he  was  intimately  associated 

JOURA^AL    OF  REV.   MR.   BRIDGE  24 1 

with  the  government  officials,  and  enjoyed  their 
society  in  Boston  as  well  as  at  his  own  hearth- 
stone. His  love  for  the  king  may  be  inferred 
from  the  following  entry  :  — ■ 

Dec.  31,  1760.  Heard  with  certainty  of  the  death  of 
King  George  the  2nd  and  of  the  accession  of  George  the 
3rd.  The  king  was  proclairried  at  Boston  yesterday,  sermon 
and  procession,  etc.,  to-morrow. 

yaimary  4,  1761.  Preached  sermon  on  the  death  of 
King  George  2nd,  and  the  accession  of  George  3rd  to  the 
British  throne. 

Every  act  of  the  Chelmsford  minister  evinced 
his  patriotism  and  proves  his  social  standing.  He 
notes  under  date  of 

June  24,  1763.  Dined  at  Col.  Stoddard's  with  his  Ex- 
cellency, the  Governor,  and  Hon.  Mr.  Ijowdoin  and  others 
and  their  ladies. 

He  records  :  — 

May  15,  1765.  Dined  at  Capt.  Barrons  with  Col.  Phipps, 
Mr.  Lechmere,  Major  Vassal,  and  their  ladies,  upon  invita- 
tion, supped  at  Col.  Stoddard's  with  Secretary  Oliver  and 
lady.  They  lodged  at  my  house  by  reason  of  Col.  Stoddard 
having  plastered  his  chamber. 

With  what  awe  the  common  people  must  have 
viewed  these  scenes,  when  the  gilded  coaches 
arrived  from  Boston  and  Cambridge,  and  rolled 
up  to  the  Colonel's  door,  and  from  them  alighted 
the  officials  of  the  king,  in  rich  and  brilliant  cos- 


tumes,  together  with  their  puffed  and  powdered 
ladies  ! 

In  April,  1771,  he  notes  :  — 

Fast  Day.  Lieut.  Governor  Oliver  attended  service  with 

and  in  the  same  year  he  records  a  visit  to  Dr.  El- 
lis and  Governor  Hutchinson,  the  latter  of  whom 
received  him  "very  graciously." 

Had  we  no  other  evidence  than  the  parson's 
own  diary,  we  should  be  convinced  that  he  at  first 
was  inclined  to  favor  the  existing  institutions,  and 
adhere  to  the  Crown.  This  appears  in  his  entry 
at  the  time  of  the  riotous  opposition  excited  by 
the  passage  of  the  Stamp  Act.  No  doubt  his 
indignation  was  strengthened  by  the  severe  treat- 
ment of  his  personal  friend  Oliver.  His  entry  on 
August  30,  1765,  is  — 

Every  day  we  hear  ye  news  from  Boston  of  ye  mobish 
doings  there  in  which  first  insurrection  they  hanged  Secre- 
tary Ohver  in  effigy,  and  then  burned  him  ;  burned  the  Stamp 
Office,  etc.,  rifled  his  dwelHng.  .  .  .  All  this  is  owing  to  ye 
Stamp  Act. 

September  i,  1766,  the  pastor  makes  record  of  a 
town  meeting,  in  which  it  was  voted  that  the  dam- 
age to  the  sufferers  in  the  late  insurrection  on 
account  of  the  Stamp  Act  should  not  by  their 
consent  be  paid  by  the  Province. 

The  sympathies  of  the  Chelmsford  minister  be- 
ing with   Francis  Bernard,  the  governor,  he  was 

REV.   MR.   BRIDGE  243 

invited  to  preach  the  election  sermon,  and  did  so 
on  May  27,  1767.  The  country  parson,  doubtless 
flattered  by  the  honor,  expressed  himself  strongly 
in  his  attachment  to  the  mother  country,  and  was 
duly  complimented  by  the  friends  of  the  govern- 
ment who  sat  at  meat  with  the  officials.  Enter- 
tainment at  the  Province  House  at  this  time  must 
have  been  an  agreeable  change  from  the  Parson's 
burdens  in  his  parish,  where  he  found  it  difficult 
to  live  within  his  limited  salary.  He  was  not  un- 
used to  seeing  negro  slaves  in  his  parish,  but  not 
such  a  retinue  of  both  sexes  as  waited  and  tended 
in  the  governor's  family. 

The  Chelmsford  minister  makes  a  record  of 

Visited  Col.  Stoddard  &  discoursed  with  his  mulatto  ser- 
vant, Hagar,  who  seemed  to  feign  herself  ill. 

He  frequently  recorded  baptisms  of  negro  in- 
fants, and  funeral  services  over  some  of  the  race 
then  family  slaves. 

What  influences  may  have  been  brought  to  bear 
to  convince  the  Chelmsford  minister  of  his  duty 
as  a  patriot  when  the  king  proved  unfaithful  to 
his  subjects  may  not  be  known  ;  but  his  journal 
shows  him  to  have  been  intimately  associated 
with  the  patriot  preachers.  Revs.  Daniel  Emerson 
of  Hollis,  N.H.,  Joseph  Emerson  of  Pepperell, 
and  William  Emerson  of  Concord,  Mass.  He  was 
also  associated  with   Rev.  Jonas  Clark  of  Lexing- 


ton,  and  other  ministers  of  the  same  standing.  It 
is  sufficient  that  Rev.  Mr.  Bridge,  after  the  pub- 
lication of  the  Hutchinson  letters  in  this  country, 
became  an  ardent  supporter  of  the  liberties  of  the 

Says  Mr.  Perham,  the  town  historian,  "The 
position  of  the  people  of  the  town  in  respect  to 
the  grievances  under  which  the  Colonies  suffered 
was  in  the  highest  degree  creditable  to  them. 
While  they  firmly  adhered  to  their  rights  as  Eng- 
lishmen, there  is  not  the  remotest  susfsfestion  of 
a  desire  to  sever  their  connection  with  the  exist- 

They  did  not  hesitate  to  instruct  their  repre- 
sentative, Colonel  Stoddard,  after  the  passing  of 
the  Stamp  Act,  — 

"  This  being  a  time  when,  by  reason  of  several  acts  of  par- 
liament, not  only  in  this  province,  but  all  the  English  Colo- 
nies of  this  Continent,  are  thrown  into  the  utmost  confusion 
and  perplexity ;  the  stamp  act  as  we  apprehend  not  only  lays 
an  unconstitutional,  but  also  an  insupportable,  tax  upon  us, 

^  In  1772  a  number  of  Hutchinson's  letters  written  to  the 
British  Cabinet  were  found.  They  revealed  the  fact  that  he  was 
urging  them  to  enforce  their  plans  against  the  liberties  of  the 
American  Colonies.  The  General  Court,  upon  knowledge  of  this, 
voted  to  impeach  him,  and  requested  his  Majesty  to  remove  the 
governor  from  ofifice.  Hutchinson,  when  informed  of  this,  dis- 
solved the  assembly,  and  at  length  became  so  obnoxious  that  he 
was  superseded  by  Governor  Gage,  whose  name  is  familiar  to 
every  patriot.      Hutchinson  died  in  England  in  1780. 

HEV.  MR.  BRIDGE  245 

and  deprives  us,  as  we  humbly  conceive,  of  those  rights  and 
privileges  to  which  we  are  entitled  as  free  born  subjects  of 
Great  Britain  by  the  royal  charter ;  wherefore  we  think  it  our 
duty  and  interest  at  this  critical  conjuncture  of  our  public 
affairs,  to  direct  you,  sir,  our  representative,  to  be  so  far  from 
countenancing  the  execution  of  the  aforesaid  stamp  act,  that 
you  use  your  best  endeavors  that  such  measures  may  be 
taken  and  such  remonstrances  made  to  the  King  and  Parlia- 
ment, as  may  obtain  a  speedy  repeal  of  the  aforesaid  act, 
and  a  removal  of  the  burden  upon  trade." 

Says  Mr.  Perham,  ''  Our  people  continued  to 
thus  firmly  adhere  to  their  principles,  and  on  Jan- 
uary 22,  1773,  instructed  their  representative,  Mr. 
Simeon  Spaulding,  at  some  length." 

"  Sir,  as  the  present  aspect  of  the  times  is  dark  and  diffi- 
cult, we  do  not  doubt  but  you  will  cheerfully  know  the  sen- 
timents and  receive  the  assistance  of  those  you  represent. 
The  matters  that  may  now  come  under  your  cognizance  are 
of  great  importance.  The  highest  wisdom,  therefore,  pru- 
dence and  decision,  are  evidently  necessary.  We  would 
earnestly  caution  you  by  no  means  to  consent  to  any  rash, 
passionate  plan  of  action,  which  will  not  only  sully  the  dig- 
nity, but  finally  prove  the  utter  destruction  of  the  cause  we 
pretend  to  support.  We  hope  those  little  animosities  that 
involve  persons,  not  things,  may  be  utterly  banished,  and 
that  every  determination  will  be  found  in  the  nature  of  a 
free  state,  and  that  therefore  every  annexed  to  each 

part  may  be  religiously  preserved. 

"Of  course,  you  will  be  careful  not  to  trample  on  majesty, 
while  you  are  firmly  but  deacently  pleading  the  liberties  of  tlie 
subject.  In  fine,  we  wish  you  that  wisdom  which  is  from 
above,  and  we  pray  you  that  your  conduct  in  this  important 
crisis  may  be  such  as  the  coolest  reflection  will  ever  justify." 


The  act  for  closing  the  port  of  Boston  brought 
out  the  people  ;  and  in  a  town  meeting  on  May  30, 
1774,  they  again  put  themselves  on  record  against 
the  act,  and  in  sympathy  with  the  people  of  Bos- 
ton. They  chose  a  Committee  of  Correspondence, 
—  Jonathan  William  Austin,  who  had  come  from 
the  office  of  John  Adams  in  Boston,-  and  settled 
as  a  lawyer  in  town  ;  Captain  Oliver  Barron  ;  Mr. 
Samuel  Perham,  who  was  tilling  the  acres  now 
cultivated  by  his  great-grandson  ;  David  Spaul- 
ding ;  Benjamin  Walker  ;  Deacon  Aaron  Cham- 
berlin  ;  Captain  Moses  Parker  ;  Samuel  Stevens, 
Jr.  ;  and   Simeon  Spaulding. 

They  concluded  their  action  of  that  May  day 
by  declaring,  "  In  freedom  we're  born,  and  in  free- 
dom we'll  die."  Each  onward  step  was  carefully 
taken  by  the  Chelmsford  patriots,  and  there  were 
no  halting  or  backward  movements.  In  Septem- 
ber, 1774,  they  sent  Simeon  Spaulding  to  represent 
them  at  Salem,  while  Mr.  Austin  and  Samuel  Per- 
ham were  made  deles-ates  to  the  first  Provincial 
meeting  at  Concord.  They  had  their  Committee 
of  Inspection  to  prevent  the  purchase  and  sale  of 
goods  imported  from  Great  Britain  ;  and  they  also 
voted  to  equip  the  Alarm  List  with  implements  of 
war,  and  to  raise  and  discipline  fifty  minute-men. 

While  their  hearts  and  hands  were  full  at  home, 
they  did  not  forget  the  suffering  people  in  the 
blockaded  port.  The  following  letter  affords  un- 
mistakable evidence  of  this  fact  :  — 


Boston,  Ocio.  3d,  1774. 

Si)\  —  To  commiserate  the  Afflicted,  to  sympathize  with 
the  oppressed  Sufferers,  to  reach  out  the  bountious  hand  for 
the  Comfort,  Relief  &  Support  of  the  Distressed,  are  sacrifices 
well-pleasing  and  acceptable  to  God  thro  Christ  our  Savior. 

Our  Worthy  Friends  and  Brethren  of  Chelmsford  have  in 
this  way  done  honour  to  the  Gospel  of  our  divine  Redeemer  and 
by  so  doing  have  greatly  honour'd  themselves.  We  have  an 
evidence  hereof  in  the  very  kind  Donation  of  Forty  Bushels  of 
Rye  from  the  patriotic  Inhabitants  of  that  Town  :  it  has  been 
received  and  housed  at  the  Granary  and  shall  be  disposed  of 
agreeable  to  the  benevolent  Intent  of  the  generous  Donors. 

It  affords  us  great  satisfaction  to  find  that  the  Conduct  of 
this  much  abused  Town  meets  with  their  approbation  ;  we 
greatly  value  it ;  and  trust  that  by  the  same  gracious  direct- 
ing and  supporting  hand.  Hand,  which  hath  brought  us 
hitherto,  we  shall  not  be  left  to  do  anything  which  may  incur 
a  forfeiture  of  that  Affection  and  esteem.  How  can  ye  help 
us  at  such  a  time  as  this  more  effectually  than  by  carrying  our 
Cause  daily  to  the  God  of  all  Grace  and  imploring  his  Mercy 
and  Favour  for  Us.     They  are  inclusive  of  all  Good. 

Your  Invitation  to  make  your  Houses  our  Homes  is  very 
engaging  should  we  at  length  be  forced  out  of  these  once 
peaceful  Habitations,  we  think  ourselves  very  happy  that  we 
are  like  to  be  so  well  provided  for ;  but  should  we  be  obliged 
even  to  remove  off  fifteen  times  the  distance  of  Chelmsford, 
yet  the  Consciousness  of  a  Cordial  Attachment  to  the  inval- 
uable civil  and  religious  Liberties  of  our  Country,  which  we 
believe  to  be  the  Cause  of  trutli  and  Righteousness,  would 
yield  us  content  and  Satisfaction  far  superior  to  that  which 
those  can  experience  who  are  ungratefully  seeking  to  "  build 
their  greatness  on  the  Country's  Ruin."  With  grateful  Ac- 
knowledgements, I  am.  Sir, 

Your  truly  obliged  Friend,  &  Servt., 

David  Jeffries, 

Per  Order  of  the  Counnittee  of  Donations. 
Mr.  Jonathan  William  Austin. 


In  addition  to  this  donation  of  the  autumn  of 
1774,  together  with  the  offer  of  their  homes  to  any 
who  desired  to  move  to  the  town,  this  patriotic 
people  gathered  a  flock  of  sheep  from  the  various 
farms,  and  sent  them  during  the  winter  of  1774-5 
to  the  relief  of  the  sufferers  who  remained  in  Bos- 
ton. In  my  journey  about  this  town  I  met  several 
people,  who,  at  the  same  hearth-stones  where  they 
gather  their  families,  have  heard  their  grandpar- 
ents tell  of  making  their  contributions  from  their 
flocks  to  the  sufferers. 

Mr.  Simeon  Spaulding  was  the  town's  agent  for 
delivering  contributions.  He  was  a  yeoman  of 
prominence  and  influence,  living  on  a  portion  of 
the  ancestral  homestead.  He  never  shrank  from 
duty,  and  was  ever  ready  for  patriotic  service. 
Besides  representing  the  town  in  various  legisla- 
tures and  congresses,  he  was  the  colonel  of  a  regi- 
ment commissioned  February  14,  1776.  He  was 
succeeded  on  the  farm  by  his  son.  Deacon  Noah 
Spaulding,  whose  daughter,  Julia  Ann,  married 
John  C.  Dalton.  Their  son,  Charles  H.  Dalton  of 
Boston,  while  at  the  old  home,  rescued  many  val- 
uable papers  from  a  destructive  hand,  among  them 
the  letter  already  quoted.  Through  the  courtesy 
of  Mr.  Dalton  I  am  enabled  to  give  these  facts  to 
my  readers. 

Weekly  drillings  and  ordinary  cares  so  absorbed 
the  farmers  of  this  town  that  the  early  spring  of 
1775  was  upon  them  before  they  hardly  realized 


it.  They  not  only  kept  an  eye  out  to  their  coun- 
try's interest,  but  plied  themselves  with  all  dili- 
gence to  the  welfare  of  their  families,  and  the 
distressed  from  Boston  who  had  accepted  their 
invitations.  The  musket,  well  scoured,  stood  at 
the  bedside,  or  hung  over  the  fireplace,  and  the 
well-filled  cartridge-box  had  a  convenient  place 
near  by.  A  bountiful  wood-pile  had  been  prepared 
at  the  door.  The  sheep  and  cows,  ''well  wintered," 
were  cropping  the  early  sprouts,  and  the  plough 
was  turning  the  fresh  soil. 

Suddenly  an  alarm  was  heard.  A  familiar  voice 
shouted,  "The  Regulars  are  coming!"  In  a  mo- 
ment the  scene  changed.  The  husband,  father, 
and  son,  with  a  few  hasty  farewells,  are  gone  ;  the 
munitions  of  war  are  not  to  be  seen  in  the  home  ; 
the  plough  is  still  in  the  furrow  ;  and  the  wife, 
mother,  and  daughter,  more  than  double  their  bur- 
den in  assumins:  the  care  of  the  farm. 

"  From  these  farms  came  more  than  a  hundred 
resolute,  determined  men.  Theirs  were  not  acts 
of  men  eager  for  war,  nor  did  they  display  the 
caution  of  timidity.  Their  language  was  not  the 
language  of  men  eager  to  achieve  glory  by  deeds 
of  arms  ;  but  the  time  for  words  had  passed,  the 
time  for  action  had  come." 

Mr.  George  Spaulding  said,  in  repeating  his 
grandfather's  story,  '*  We  rallied  at  the  alarm- 
post,  a  bowlder  agreed  upon  by  previous  arrange- 
ment, and  made  hasty  preparations  for  our  march. 


Parson  Bridge  was  on  hand,  and  wanted  us  to  go 
into  the  meeting-house  and  have  prayers  before 
we  left  town ;  but  some  were  on  horseback,  and 
some  on  foot,  and  all  more  or  less  anxious  to  get 
started.  In  fact,  Sergeant  [later  Captain]  Ford, 
who  came  from  East  Chelmsford  [  now  Lowell  ] 
in  charge  of  a  squad,  replied  to  the  good  parson, 
that  he  had  more  urgent  business  on  hand,  and 
hastened  on  with  his  men.  There  was  but  little 
military  order  observed  by  us.  We  went  off  in 
squads  as  soon  as  convenient.  One  company  of 
sixty-one  men  was  under  the  command  of  Captain 
Oliver  Barron,  and  the  other  of  forty-three  men 
was  under  the  command  of  Colonel  Moses  Parker. 
We  reached  Concord  in  time  to  have  a  part  in  the 
pursuit  of  the  retreating  redcoats.  We  had  our 
first  shot  at  them  at  Merriam's  Corner,  and  more 
at  Hardy's  Hill.  Captain  Ford,  who  was  at  this 
time  sergeant  in  Captain  Barron's  company,  was 
prominent  on  the  Hill.  He  was  an  old  fighter  of 
the  French  and  Indians,  and  knew  how  to  handle 
his  musket  to  an  advantage.  He  claimed  to  have 
caused  the  death  of  five  of  the  enemy  on  Lincoln 
soil.  [See  ''Beneath  Old  Roof  Trees."]  We  con- 
tinued in  the  pursuit,  determined  on  redressing 
our  wrongs.  Captain  Oliver  Barron  and  Deacon 
Aaron  Chamberlin  were  wounded  that  day." 

Doubtless  my  young  patriot  readers  are  anx- 
ious to  know  the  attitude  of  Rev.  Mr.  Bridge  as 
revealed  in  his  own  journal.     A  few  entries  are 


introduced  to  show  the  pastor's  course  of  proceed- 
ing when  patriotism  was  evinced  by  adhering  to 
the  king  :  — 

1755,  Sept.  15.  A  general  muster  of  companies  through 
the  Provinces  to  raise  men  to  reinforce  army  at  Crown  Point. 
Spent  evening  at  Parker's  with  officers,  &  this  day  the  news 
came  of  the  engagement  between  Gen.  Johnson's  army  & 
the  French  &  Indians,  in  which  Jolmson's  army  came  off 
conquerors,  having  taken  the  French  General,  &  killed  700 
officers  &  men,  &  taken  and  wounded  many.  The  baUle 
was  on  the  8  Sept.  instant  —  a  signal  mercy.  Though  at  the 
same  time  we  are  called  to  mourn  the  loss  of  divers  brave 
officers  and  soldiers  to  the  number  of  about   120  or   130. 

Sept.  25.  V^isited  the  wife  of  Jona.  Barron,  as  I  did  yes- 
terday towards  night,  upon  a  flying  report  of  her  husband 
being  killed  in  the  battle  agt.  the  enemy  on  the  way  to  Crown 

26.  Visited  Mrs.  Barron  this  morning  upon  the  acct.  of 
her  hearing  more  news  of  her  husband  being  killed,  &  dis- 
coursed with  her.  Prayed  at  Parker's  with  a  company  going 
off  to  Crown  Point,  Captain  Butterfield  of  Dunstable. 

27.  Visited  Widow  Parker  upon  a  flying  report  of  her 
son  being  killed  in  the  fight  under  Gen.  Johnson,  so  upon 
the  same  acct.  visited  wife  of  Jacob  Parker. 

30.  Visited  Mrs.  Barron,  who  this  day  is  certified  of  the 
death  of  her  husband  in  the  late  battle  with  our  enemies  in 
the  way  toward  Crown  Point,  by  an  extract  of  a  letter  of 
Maj.  Nichols  (to  his  wife),  who  also  was  wounded  in  the 
same  engagement.  I  discoursed  with  her  again,  &  endeav- 
ored to  comfort  her. 

Lieutenant  Barron  was  in  the  successful  siege 
of  Quebec,  and  upon  his  return  presented  his 
minister  with  a  silver  cup,  a  trophy  brought  from 


there  ;  but  he  lost  his  life  in  the  campaign  against 
Crown  Point  in  1755.  Two  other  Chelmsford 
soldiers  perished  at  the  same  time,  viz.,  Jacob 
Parker  and  James  Emery. 

In  the  following  year  came  the  unsuccessful 
campaign  against  the  same  place,  when  four  men 
of  Chelmsford  lost  their  lives,  viz.,  Nathaniel 
Butterfield,  Simeon  Corey,  James  Button,  and 
Isaac  Parker.  Clergymen  were  required  to  be 
furnished  with  military  equipments.  The  Chelms- 
ford pastor  makes  record  on  July  8,  1757,  of  a 
call  from  Colonel  Stoddard,  who  asked  him  if  he 
was  furnished  with  arms  and  ammunition  accord- 
ing to  law. 

Through  all  these  sorrows  we  find  the  pastor 
having  a  personal  interest  in  the  sufferers,  and  in 
the  general  results.  In  1758,  Rev.  Mr.  Bridge  re- 
cords :  — 

Spent  the  evening  at  Parkers,  whose  company  met  to  ap- 
point Bayonet  men  under  the  new  law. 

He  also  gives  an  account  of  Benjamin  By  ham 
and  others  going  to  the  war.  It  seems  that  it  was 
customary  for  troops  passing  through  a  town  to 
halt  for  prayers,  etc.     Mr.  Bridge  has  recorded  :  — 

Prayed  with  troops  which  came  from  Newbury,  Rowley, 
&c.,  on  their  way  to  the  Forts  ;  also  at  Lieut.  Proctor's  with 
the  same. 

The  rejoicing  at  the  completion  of  the  French 
war  is  seen  in  the  following  :  — 

THE   MINIS  TER  'S  JO  URN  A  L.  253 

Col.  Stoddard's  whole  house  was  illuminated  on  account 
of  the  taking  of  Quebec.  16  Oct.,  1759,  was  the  day  ap- 
pointed by  the  government  to  be  observed. 

25th  Oct.,  1759.  Thanksgiving  on  acct.  of  the  reduction 
of  Quebec.  Preached  from  Psalm  98-1 .  At  night  Col.  Stod- 
dard and  others  visited  me  ;  also  brother  John  from  Boston, 
who  fired  us  a  half  doz.  Sky  Rockets. 

August,  1760.  Visited  Lieut.  Jona.  Spaulding  and  Ensign 
Jona.  Harwood,  each  of  them  lately  bereaved  of  a  son  in  the 
army  at  Crown  Point. 

This  faithful  pastor's  journal  is  evidence  of  his 
service  on  occasions  more  cheerful,  such  as  "rais- 
ings," "huskings,"  and  the  like,  in  his  own  parish, 
also  "barbecues,"  "ordinations,"  etc.,  in  other 
towns.  While  weeping  with  his  sorrowing  neigh- 
bors, he  is  called  to  marry  a  couple,  and  receives 
as  his  fee,  "a  guinea  &  a  pair  of  kid  gloves  for 
self  &  wife." 

After  the  King  Street  massacre  of  1770,  Rev- 
erend Mr.  Bridge  wrote  :  — 

Bad  news  this  day  or  two  from  Boston,  the  soldiers  having 
killed  four  persons  and  wounded  otiiers. 

Under  date  of  April  19,  1775,  he  wrote  :  — 

The  Civil  war  was  begun  at  Concord  this  morning  !  Lord 
direct  all  things  for  his  glory,  the  good  of  his  church  and 
people,  and  preservation  of  the  British  Colonies,  and  to  the 
shame  and  confusion  of  our  oppressors. 

April  20.  In  a  terrible  state,  by  reason  of  ye  news  from 
our  army.  The  onset  of  ye  British  was  begun  at  Lexington, 
was  carried  on  at  Concord,  where  some  were  killed  on  both 


sides.  They  ingloriously  retreated  soon  and  were  followed 
by  our  men  down  to  Cambridge,  before  night.  Five  captives 
were  carried  through  this  town  for  Amherst.  A  constant 
marching  of  soldiers  from  ye  towns  above  toward  ye  army 
as  there  were  yesterday  from  this  town  and  the  neighboring 
towns.  We  are  now  involved  in  a  war  which  Lord  only 
knows  what  will  be  the  issue  of,  but  I  will  hope  in  His  mercy, 
and  wait  to  see  His  salvation. 

April  21.  I  sent  provisions  to  the  army  as  did  many 
more.  'Tis  a  very  distressing  day,  soldiers  passing  all  day 
and  all  night. 

Sergeant  Ford,  upon  retm-ning  from  service  in 
response  to  the  Lexington  alarm,  proceeded  im- 
mediately to  raise  a  company.  His  patriotic  zeal 
inspired  others  ;  and  in  ten  days  he  was  joined  by 
fifty-seven  men,  and  on  May  19  he  received  his 
commission  as  captain. 

The  part  taken  by  the  Chelmsford  soldiers  in 
the  battle  of  Bunker  Hill  was  most  creditable. 
The  companies  belonged  to  the  Twenty-seventh 
Regiment,  of  which  their  former  townsman,  Eben- 
ezer  Bridge,  was  colonel.  John  Ford,  captain  of 
one  of  the  companies,  distinguished  himself  in 
this  connection. 

"  He  volunteered  to  carry  from  Cambridge  to 
Bunker  Hill  a  message  from  General  Ward.  To 
do  this  he  must  pass  over  Charlestown  Neck  in 
the  range  of  British  guns,  at  the  imminent  peril 
of  his  life.  He  had  orders  from  General  Ward  to 
dismount  from  his  horse  at  the  Neck  and  cross  on 
foot,  in  order  to  escape  observation.     But  he  ran 


the  risk,  and  passed  and  repassed  on  horseback. 
While  at  Bunker  Hill  he  warned  General  Prescott 
that  from  the  movements  of  the  enemy  it  was 
evident  that  they  were  preparing  to  attack  the 
Americans  upon  the  hill,  and  urged  the  necessity 
of  immediately  casting  up  breastworks  and  re- 

''When  the  preparation  for  the  battle  began, 
the  gallant  captain,  who  had  no  taste  for  inactiv- 
ity, obtained  permission  from  General  Ward  at 
Cambridge  to  withdraw  his  company  privately,  and 
march  directly  to  the  scene  of  action  to  re-enforce 
the  troops.  They  marched  across  Charlestown 
Neck,  which  was  being  raked  by  cannon  from  the 
British  ships,  and  proceeded  down  Bunker  Hill, 
where  they  were  met  by  General  Putnam,  who  or- 
dered Captain  Ford,  with  his  company,  to  draw 
into  the  line  the  cannon  which  had  been  deserted 
by  General  Callender,  and  left  at  the  foot  of  the 
hill  after  the  first  attack.  The  captain  at  first  re- 
monstrated on  the  ground  that  his  company  were 
ignorant  of  the  management  of  artillery,  many  hav- 
ing never  seen  a  cannon  before  ;  but  finally  obeyed, 
and  moved  with  the  cannon  and  the  general  him- 
self to  the  rail  fence,  which  they  reached  just  be- 
fore the  battle  began. 

"  Captain  Knowlton  with  Connecticut  troops, 
and  Colonel  Stark  with  New  Hampshire  troops, 
were  also  stationed  at  this  part  of  the  defence. 
The  right  wing  of  the  British  army,  under  Gen- 


eral  Howe,  was  directed  against  this  point  for  the 
purpose  of  turning  the  American  flank,  and  cut- 
ting off  a  retreat  from  the  redoubt.  As  the  enemy 
advanced  to  the  attack,  the  artillery,  manned  by  a 
portion  of  Captain  Ford's  company,  opened  upon 
them  with  great  effect,  some  of  the  shots  being 
directed  by  General  Putnam  himself.  The  mus- 
kets were  ordered  to  reserve  their  fire  till  the 
enemy  were  within  eight  rods." 

An  old  grave-stone  in  the  burying-ground  at 
Chelmsford  tells  how  a  soldier  from  that  town 
disobeyed  orders. 


Who  Died  July  31,  1820,  /Et.  64. 

IN     HOPE    OF     eternal    LIFE    WHICH    GOD    WHO    CANNOT     LIE    HATH 

He  was  among  the  brave  asserters  and  defenders  of  the  Hberties  of  his 
country  at  Bunker  Hill,  where  he  opened  the  battle  by  firing 
upon  the  enemy  before  orders  were  given  &  after  enjoy- 
ing for  many  years  the  blessings  of  civil  & 
religious  liberty  in  common  with  others 

He  sniik  to  rest 
Wit/i  all  his  connt}-y's  honors  blest. 

The  Chelmsford  men  were  among  those  who 
used  their  fowling-pieces  with  deadly  effect ;  and 
the  enemy  were  obliged  to  retreat  for  a  time, 
"leaving  on  the  ground,"  as  General  Stark  related, 
"where  but  the  day  before  the  mowers  had  swung 
the  scythe  in  peace,  the  dead,  as  thick  as  sheep 
in  a  fold."     During  the  entire  engagement,  Cap- 

NEWS   OF   THE   BATTLE.  2$/ 

tain  Ford  and  his  men  bore  an  honorable  part. 
Thirteen  of  the  company  were  wounded.  Ten 
Chehiisford  men  were  in  Captain  Benjamin  Walk- 
er's company,  and  did  good  service.  Captain 
Walker  was  wounded,  taken  prisoner,  and  died 
of  his  wounds  in  a  jail  in  Boston.  Lieutenant- 
Colonel  Moses  Parker  met  a  similar  fate.^ 

The  first  report  of  this  battle  was  received  in 
Chelmsford  by  way  of  Billerica  on  the  evening  of 
the  17th.  The  alarm-guns  were  fired,  great  ex- 
citement prevailed,  and  before  morning  some  of 
the  wounded  returned  to  their  distressed  families. 
Under  that  date,  Rev.  Mr.  Bridge  writes  :  — 

"A  terrible  time  this  in  relation  to  our  army,  in  battle 
with  our  oppressors  at  Charlestovvn.  The  whole  town  on  hre. 
The  armies  engaged  on  Bunker's  Hill.  At  night  we  saw  a 
fire  from  Chelmsford." 

On  the  following  day  the  parson  writes  :  — 

"The  armies  at  Charlestown  still  engaged,  and  news  fly- 
ing with  respect  to  the  slain  and  wounded.  This  is  a  day 
big  with  distress  and  trouble.  Our  enemies  are  those  who 
were  our  brethren  of  the  same  nation,  and  subjects  of  the 
same  king,  and  all  for  the  sake  of  a  wicked  and  corrupt  min- 
istry, a  deluded,  a  devilish,  a  venal  parliament.'" 

1  "  During  the  evening  and  night  after  the  battle,  the  air 
trembled  with  the  groans  of  the  wounded,  as  they  were  borne  over 
the  Charles,  and  through  the  streets  of  Boston  to  hospitals,  where 
they  were  to  waste  away  from  the  summer  heat,  and  the  scarcity 
of  proper  food."  —  Bancroft. 



Rev.  Mr.  Bridge's  journal  furnishes  us  with 
glimpses  of  later  service  of  Chelmsford  soldiers, 
and  of  his  own  patriotic  acts. 

Chelmsford  Monumknt  (Revolutionary) 

JiDie  30,  1776.  Read  a  resolve  of  the  General  Court  rel- 
ative to  raising  men  to  go  to  Canada,  and  notified  the  people 
to  appear  with  arms,  etc. 

July  2.  The  town  again  in  confusion.  Companies  met 
to  draw  out  men  for  Canada. 

July  5.  More  hurry  about  raising  soldiers.  Col.  Cum- 
mings  appointed  General  Ijut  resigned. 

July  22.     Two  of  the  British  officers,  prisoners  at  Duns- 


table,  visited  me.  (They  may  have  expected  sympathy  from 
the  parson,  formerly  known  to  be  a  loyalist.) 

July  23.  Capt.  Ford  and  his  company  marched  oflf  in 
order  to  join  our  northern  army.  At  his  desire  I  went  to 
the  meeting-house  previous  to  their  marching,  sang  the  18 
Psalm,  and  prayed  with  them  and  gave  them  a  word  of 
exhortation.  Part  of  two  other  companies  of  soldiers  on 
their  march  from  the  lower  towns  came  into  town  towards 
night  and  lodged  in  town. 

Capt.  Ford  was  again  out  with  his  company  to  re-enforce 
the  northern  army  in  Sept.  of  1777,  and  was  present  at  the 
surrender  of  Burgoyne  and  the  northern  army  in  the  follow- 
ing month. 

July  25.  Much  company  and  much  confusion  by  reason 
of  the  soldiers  passing  through. 

July  26.  Early  in  the  morning  I  prayed  in  the  meeting- 
house with  Capts.  Fay  and  Bancroft  of  VVoburn  and  Read- 
ing and  their  respective  companies  upon  their  march  to  join 
the  northern  army. 

Sept.  I.  Read  the  Declaration  of  Independence  of  the 
U.  States  of  America  in  public  congregation  agreeable  to 
the  order  of  the  council  of  this  State,  and  when  I  had  done 
added  '  Zion  heard  and  was  glad,  and  the  daughter  of  Judah 
rejoiced  because  of  the  judgment  of  the  Lord."" 

Sept.  8.  Was  sent  for  and  went  to  Parker,  Bills,  or  \Vm. 
Parkers,  his  child  sick,  he  in  the  war,  prayed  with  them. 

Sept.  19.  Visited  David  Spaulding  upon  his  receiving  the 
news  of  his  son  David  in  the  army  at  Ticonderoga  —  he  dies 
of  small  pox. 

Sept.  24.  Visited  Willard  Byam  ill  at  his  fathers.  Jonas 
Dutton  ill  at  his  mothers,  both  came  home  from  the  army, 
prayed  with  each  family. 

In  the  morning  went  to  the  meeting-house  and  prayed 
with  a  company  of  soldiers  going  off  toward  New  York. 
They  are  to  go  under  command  of  Zach.  Wright  of  West- 


Opposite  the  biirying-ground,  and  on  an  attrac- 
tive common,  stands  a  unique  granite  monument 
on  which  is  read  :  — 

In    Honor   of    the   Townsmen   of    Chelmsford   Who   served 

THEIR   Country    in    the    War   of   the    Revolution,    this 

Monument     is    Erected    by    a    Grateful    Posterity. 

Erected  1859. 

Let  the  cJiihlren  g7iard  wliat  the  sires  have  7von. 

John  Bates,  Died  in  Army  at  Cambridge 

David  Spalding,  Jr.,  Died  in  Army  at  Ticonderoga  ; 

Pelatiah  Adams,  killed  at  Cherry  Valley; 

Noah  Foster,  shot  at  capture  of  Burgoyne ; 

Henry  Fletcher,  killed  at   White  Plains; 

Lt.   Col.   Moses  Parker  and   Capt.   Benj.   Walker, 

Wounded  at  Bunker  Hill,  June  17,  1775. 

Died  Prisoners  in  Boston,  July  4,  and  Aug.   i,  '75  ; 

Lt.  Robert  Spalding,  Died  at  Milford,  Ct.,  '76. 








Man  loves  the  soil  that  gave  him  birth  as  the  child  loves  the  mother, 
and  from  the  same  inherent  impulses.  —  B.  J.  Lossing. 

Those  who  are  accustomed  to  think  of  Lowell 
as  a  city  of  comparatively  recent  origin  will  hardly 
expect  to  find  the  footprints  of  the  patriots  of  the 
Revolution  along  its  busy  streets  ;  but  a  careful 
search  will  reveal  them,  and  also  bring  to  mind 
the  faithful  service  of  much  earlier  patriots. 

Nature,  through  the  distribution  of  her  water- 
ways, had  determined  that  East  Chelmsford  should 
be  a  city  ;  but  long  before  the  white  settlers  found 
a  use  for  the  bountiful  waters,  there  lived  and 
loved  another  race  of  beings.  The  red  man  of  the 
forest,  with  his  dusky  mate,  was  early  attracted  to 



the  place.  In  1653  the  Legislature  of  Massachu- 
setts granted  the  Indians  a  reservation  about  the 
falls,  and  they  were  peaceable  through  the  in- 
fluence of  the  Christian  patriot,  Eliot.  Yet  other 
tribes  were  of  hostile  intent  ;  and  the  good  citizen 

Bowers  Homestead,  Lowell 

was  he  who  kept  a  vigilant  watch  for  the  lurking 
enemy,  and  took  steps  to  protect  himself  and 
family  against  the  foe. 

Of  those  who  early  did  service  in  the  interest  of 
the  white  settlers  of  this  locality,  we  can  readily 
trace   one   to   the   Bowers   farm.     **  This   estate," 


says  Mr.  Perham,  ''  has  been  in  the  family  posses- 
sion as  long  as  its  history  is  known.  The  dwelling 
is  the  oldest  standing  in  Lowell,  and  has  doubtless 
served  the  Bowers  family  for  two  centuries.  The 
first  to  settle  here  was  Jerathmell  Bowers,  who 
was  a  son  of  George,  who  was  in  Plymouth  in 
1639.  Jerathmell  was  born  May  2,  1650.  He 
doubtless  came  to  Chelmsford,  now  Lowell,  with 
the  family  of  Henry  Boutell,  who  was  his  step- 
father. He  was  a  man  of  wealth  and  influence, 
was  early  chosen  representative  to  the  General 
Court,  and  was  captain  in  the  military  organization 
doing  good  service."  In  proof  of  this  I  quote 
from  the  diary  of  Chief  Justice  Samuel  Sewall, 
who,  with  all  his  cares,  found  time  to  make  a  tour 
of  inspection  through  Middlesex  County.  In  his 
diary  he  wrote  :  — 

''  Mo7iday,  Oct.  26,  1702.  Went  to  Chelmsford,  by  that 
time  got  there  'twas  ahnost  dark;  saw  Capt.  Bowery  and  his 
company ;  gave  a  volley  and  Huzzas  ;  supYl  at  Mr.  Clark's  1 
I  and  Col.  Pierce  in  his  study.'' 

The  document  reproduced  on  page  297  is  of 
interest  in  this  connection  for  the  signature  of 
Thomas  Hinchman,  a  patriot  of  the  time,  whose 
name  is  indelibly  stamped  on  the  pages  of  the 
early  history  of  Massachusetts. 

1  Mr.  Clark  was  the  minister,  Rev.  Thomas  Clark,  whose  daugh- 
ter married  Rev.  John  Hancock  of  Lexington,  and  hence  became 
the  grandmother  of  Governor  John  Hancock. 


Jerathmell  Bowers  removed  from  this  homestead 
to  Groton,  where  he  died  in  1724,  at  the  age  of 
seventy-eight  years.  Probably  he  was  not  long 
away  from  his  home,  as  we  find  in  Chelmsford 
burying-ground  a  stone  to  the  memory  of  "  Mrs. 
Elizabeth  Bowers,  wife  to  Capt.  Jerathmell  Bow- 
ers who  died,  March  4th  1721,  in  ye  "jG  year  of 
Her  age."  Captain  Bowers  was  a  man  of  in- 
fluence in  his  time,  and  on  this  old  homestead 
conducted  business  according  to  the  demands  of 
the  time.  October  5,  1686,  Jerathmell  Bowers 
and  John  Fisk  were  licensed  by  the  court  to  sell 
"  strong  waters."  Two  years  later  Bowers  and 
Cornelius  Waldo  were  licensed  to  carry  on  the 
same  business.  Fisk  was  a  son  of  the  minister, 
and  Waldo  was  the  deacon  of  the  church.  No 
harm  was  thought  to  arise  from  the  sale  of  intoxi- 
cants to  the  white  people,  but  it  was  bad  for  the 
Indians  with  whom  Captain  Bowers  had  to  do. 

Six  children  were  objects  of  Captain  Bowers's 
solicitude  at  this  old  homestead,  and  he  was  doubt- 
less succeeded  by  his  son  Jerathmell,  and  perhaps 
Jonathan,  at  the  old  home  ;  and  it  is  certain  that 
William,  Joseph,  and  Sewall  have  each  tilled  the 
ancestral  acres  and  gone  to  their  reward,  and  two 
generations  are  still  living  there.  The  hearth- 
stone around  which  the  family  gathered  when  the 
red  men  were  their  enemies  was  the  place  where 
anxious  mothers  and  children  gathered  on  the 
morning  of  April  ,19,  1775,  when  the  men  fell  in 


with   Captain   Ford's   company   and   hastened    on 
towards  Concord. 

At  some  distance  from  the  Bowers  homestead 
was  the  home  and  mill  of  John  Ford.  He  was  a 
son  of  Robert  Ford,  born  in  Haverhill  in  1738,  and 
early  settled  in   East  Chelmsford  (Lowell),  near 

the  Pawtucket  Falls.  He  was  a  strong  man,  of  an 
adventurous  spirit,  and  was  led  to  this  locality  by 
the  advantao-es  which  it  afforded  for  millinsf.  He 
obtained  the  land  bordering  on  the  Merrimack, 
either  whole  or  in  part,  from  the  Indians,  He 
erected  a  mill  near  the  falls,  and  a  house  not  far 
away  for  the  comfort  of  his  family.  Here  he  took 
up  his  abode,  and  was  recognized  as  an  influential 


citizen  of  Chelmsford  long  before  any  one  thought 
of  rebelling  against  the  king,  whose  faithful  sub- 
jects they  were.  In  the  bustling  city  of  Lowell, 
where  so  little  remains  to  remind  us  of  the  pio- 
neers, it  is  refreshing  to  turn  aside  from  the  hum 
of  the  many  spindles,  follow  the  course  of  the 
river  a  short  distance,  and  come  to  the  Ford  es- 
tate, where  the  descendants  of  the  brave  captain 
still  live,  and  with  most  commendable  pride  cher- 
ish the  old  homestead  of  the  founder. 

To  be  sure  changes  have  come.  The  rude  dwell- 
ing which  sheltered  the  brave  miller  and  patriot 
has  given  way  to  two  commodious  residences,  both 
occupied  by  Ford  descendants.  The  roof-tree  set 
up  by  Captain  John  Ford  after  the  Revolution  is 
that  which  shelters  the  fourth  generation.  Here 
I  received  a  most  cordial  welcome  from  Mrs. 
Henry  G.  Lambert,  to  whom  I  am  indebted  for 
the  following  story  :  — 

"  The  first  of  our  family  here  was  John  Ford. 
He  was  succeeded  by  a  son,  Elisha  Ford,  and 
daughters  ;  of  the  latter,  Sally  married  John  Cor- 
liss of  Haverhill,  N.H.  Their  son,  John  L.  Cor- 
liss, was  succeeded  by  daughters.  Sarah  Corliss 
married' Henry  A.  Lambert  of  New  York,  and 
Helen  married  William  D.  Earl  of  North  Attle- 
boro,  Mass.  I  am  a  great-granddaughter  of  Cap- 
tain John  Ford,  and  there  are  seven  of  the  next 
generation  who  cherish  these  ancestral  acres. 
Grandfather  Ford  was  at  work  in  his  mill  when 

THE   FORD   FAMILY.  26/ 

the  alarm-gun  sounded  from  the  hill  not  far  away. 
But  the  miller  was  so  well  posted  on  the  state  of 
affairs  that  he  knew  what  that  meant,  and  he  lost 
no  time  in  adjusting  his  saw,  and  making  things 
ready  to  leave.  He  refreshed  himself  with  a  bowl 
of  bread  and  milk,  which  he  ate  when  standing  by 
a  window  seen  in  the  cut,  the  one-story  part  of 
the  dwelling  being  his  home  at  that  time.  He 
mounted  his  horse,  and  made  haste  to  the  centre 
of  the  town  of  Chelmsford.  He  was  joined  by 
neighbors  on  the  way,  and  as  you  have  already 
learned,  was  in  so  great  haste  as  to  decline  the 
thoughtful  invitation  of  the  good  pastor  to  go  into 
the  meeting-house  for  prayers." 

*'  Grandfather  Ford,"  continued  my  informant, 
*'  was  familiar  with  military  life  long  before  the 
call  to  arms  on  the  morning  of  April  19,  1775. 
He  had  been  obliged  in  his  early  days  here  at  the 
mill  to  keep  a  close  watch  for  the  Indians,  who 
were  inclined  to  make  some  trouble  at  times  ;  and 
on  one  occasion  he  had  an  experience  which  re- 
sulted in  putting  an  end  to  the  annoying  party. 
While  such  incidents  are  not  altogether  pleasant 
to  recall,  they  serve  to  show  the  nature  of  the 
preparation  which  Captain  Ford  had  for  the  ser- 
vice of  a  true  patriot  in  1775." 

The  family  story  around  the  old  hearth-stone 
becomes  doubly  real  through  the  presence  of  the 
sword  carried  by  Captain  Ford  from  this  place  to 
the  battle  of  Bunker  Hill,  also  his  musket  and  pow- 


der-horn  used  in  the  Continental  army.  Among 
numerous  papers  that  belonged  to  the  patriot  are 
two  commissions.  The  first  is  to  John  Ford  as 
''  captain  of  a  company,  raised  by  this  Colony  as  a 
temporary  re-enforcement  to  the  American  army, 
until  the  first  day  of  April  next,  at  Watertown, 
7th  day  of  February,  1776,  in  the  i6th  year  of  the 
reign  of  his  Majesty,  King  George  the  third.  By 
command  of  the  major  part  of  the  council." 

The  other  is  to  appoint  John  Ford  as  '*  captain 
of  the  First  company  in  the  Regiment  of  Foot, 
whereof  Ebenezer  Bridge  is  colonel,  raised  by  the 
Continental  Congress  aforesaid  for  the  Defence  of 
the  Colony.  By  order  of  the  Congress,  Jos.  War- 
ren, President,  P.  T." 

Among  other  papers  which  these  descendants 
cherish  with  a  genuine  spirit  of  patriotism  are  the 
following  :  — 

Chelmsford,  Jan.  26,  1776. 

Received  of  Philip  Parkis  three  pounds,  twelve  shilHngs, 
lawful  money,  in  full  for  doing  a  turn  for  him  in  the  Conti- 
nental army,  this  present  year. 

Sylas  Parker. 

Attested:  Francis  Southack. 

Camp  at  Cambridge,  June  27,  1775. 
Received  of  Eben  Bridge  Fifteen  pounds  in  Province  notes 
for  my  company. 

^15.  John  Ford. 

In  the  summer  of  1776  another  company  was 
raised  in  Chelmsford,  and  stationed  at  Ticonderoga 


under  command  of  Captain  Ford.  While  there 
the  captain  kept  a  regimental  order-book,  which 
is  still  in  the  family.  In  this  book,  now  one  hun- 
dred and  twenty  years  old,  are  recorded  regimen- 
tal orders,  trials  by  courts-martial,  promotions  of 
officers,  punishments  of  disorderly  soldiers,  and 
other  matters  pertaining  to  a  military  encamp- 
ment. Every  day  are  recorded  the  parole  and 
countersign  of  the  camp.  From  this  book  I  quote 
a  few  orders,  being  careful  to  preserve  the  exact 

form  and  spelling. 

August  24,  1776. 

Ensign  Lee  of  Capt.  Spauldings  company,  Col.  Reed's 
Regt.  tryed  at  the  Court- Marshal  for  bying  a  Gun  belong- 
ing to  Col.  Marshfield  Regt.  &  Defacing  the  name  New 
Gersey  &  the  No  that  was  mark*^  on  it.  Pleading  Guilty  — 
the  Court  Sentenced  him  to  Return  to  Col.  Marshfield  & 
to  be  Repromanded  by  the  Commander  of  the  Regt.  at  the 
H.  D.  of  the  Regt.  Richard  Buck  of  Col.  Patisons  Regt. 
tryed  at  the  same  gl  Court  Marshal  for  Refusing  his  Duty  & 
striking  his  officer.  The  Court  finds  him  Guilty  &  Sentences 
him  to  Receive  39  Lashes  on  his  Bare  Back  for  Each  Crime. 

James  Conner  of  Capt.  Osgoods  Company  in  the  Regt. 
Commanded  by  Lt.  Col  Ward  is  tryed  by  the  same  g^ 
Court  Marshal  for  Desertion  &  pleads  Guilty,  &  is  Sentenced 
to  Receive  39  Lashes  on  his  Bare  Back  &  ware  a  with  on 
his  neck  for  14  Days  for  a  mark  of  Igno-minion,  &  if  he  is 
seen  without  it  is  to  Receive  100  Lashes,  he  is  to  return  to 
his  Duty  in  his  Battalion,  the  Gel  approves  all  the  a  bove  & 
orders  the  Execution's  to-morrow  morning  at  guard  mount- 
ing. —  John  Ford. 

Town  records,  old  grave-stones,  and  family  tra- 
ditions prove  to  us  that  many  young  patriots,  the 


pride  of  New  England  homes,  perished  from  dis- 
ease during  this  northern  campaign,  in  the  sarwe 
locality  where  other  patriots  from  the  same  towns 
had  given  up  their  lives  in  the  service  of  the  king 
in  the  earlier  wars.  We  have  an  intimation  of 
this  in  an  entry  of  Captain  Ford,  under  date  of 
August  26,  1776  :  — 

"  After  order  the  commanding  officer  of  each  RegSii  is  to 
send  a  subbordinate  officer  to-morrow  morning  at  sunrise  to 
Fort  George  to  Bring  the  Arms  of  the  Dead  &^  Discliarged 
of  their  Respective  Regtms  to  this  Place,  officer  will  Receipt 
to  the  Director  at  Fort  George  for  the  Arms  they  Receive, 
and  on  their  arrival  at  this  Place  Deliver  them  to  the  com- 
manding of  their  Respective  Corps/' 

Head  Quarters,  y^/zi,'-//^/' 31st,  1776. 


The  Officers  &  Soldiers  may  be  satisfied  that  the  General 
has  left  no  means  in  his  Power  untry'd  to  procure  medicines 
and  every  Comfort  for  the  Sick  of  this  Army  which  the  Sta- 
tion &  Circumstances  of  this  place  will  admit.  The  Director 
of  this  Department  Dr.  Stringer  was  sent  to  N.  York  three 
and  thirty  Days  ago  with  positive  orders  to  return  the  instant 
he  had  provided  the  drugs  and  medicines  so  much  wanted  ; 
since  this,  repeated  Letters  have  been  wrote  to  N.  York  and 
Philadelphia  setting  forth  in  the  strongest  terms  the  pressing 
necessity  of  an  immediate  supply  of  those  articles.  The 
General  is  credibly  informed  that  a  principal  Surgeon  is  dis- 
patched from  N.  York  above  a  Fortnight  ago  with  a  supply  of 
medicines  &  apprehends  that  the  Badness  of  the  weather  and 
Road  has  alone  prevented  his  Arrival.  It  is  the  Soldiers 
Duty  to  maintain  the  part  he  is  ordered  to  defend.  The 
same  climate  affects  them,  our  enemies,  that  effects  us,  &  the 

CA  P  TA  IiV  FORD  'S  JO  URN  A  L.  2/1 

favor  of  the  Almighty  to  whom  we  have  appealed  will,  if  we 
trust  in  him  preserve  us  from  Slavery  &  Death.  The  Gen- 
eral recommends  it  to  the  Surgeons  of  the  Different  Regts  to 
communicate  to  each  other  the  state  of  the  sick  in  their 
ranks,  and  their  different  Diseases,  the  Remedies  principally 
wanted  &  the  comforts  which  are  most  in  request,  for  he 
will  have  nothing  unattempted  in  his  power  to  provide  what 
ever  he  can  command  for  their  Recovery.  The  General  also 
desires  the  medical  Gentlemen  will  consult  upon  and  adopt 
the  most  proper  measures  for  obtaining  those  salutary  pur- 

Head  Quarters,  Oct.  8th,  1776. 
PAROLE    MADRID,    CT.    SN.    WALL. 

The  Commissary  to  issue  four  sheep  to  each  Regt.,  3  to 
the  Corps  of  Artillery,  &  3  to  the  Artificers,  at  their  usual 
time  of  Drawing  Provisions.  The  Commanding  Officers  will 
direct  the  sick  &  weak  Soldiers  be  supply'd  with  this  Refresh- 
ment. The  Commissary  is  to  recon  the  Sheep  in  their  Allow- 
ance to  the  Regt.  at  their  estimated  weight. 

Head  Quarters,  Oct.  12,  1776. 
Discharged  soldiers  are  to  return  in  to  the  commanding 
officers  of  the  Regt.,  to  which  they  belong,  the  arms,  am- 
munitions, accoutrements,  &c,  which  they  may  have  in  Pos- 
session belonging  to  the  public.  The  commanding  officers 
are  to  see  that  this  order  is  comply'd  with.  A  Return  of  the 
names,  companies  &  Regiments  of  soldiers  who  have  been 
discharged  the  Service  from  the  first  Day  of  Oct.  is  to  be 
given  in  to  the  Deputy  Adjutant  GenL,  to-morrow  at  orderly- 
Time,  afterwards  to  be  given  in  on  Saturdays. 

We  have  an  intimation  of  the  condition  of  the 
army  by  a  return  of  Captain  Ford's  company, 
made  on  September  27,  1776  :  — 


Capt.,  2  Lieuts.,  i  Ensign,  4  Sargts.,  2  Trumpeters,  33 
fit  for  duty,  11  on  command,  4  sick  absent,  34  sick  present, 
82  total  rank  and  file. 

Head  Quarters,  Oct.  15,  1776. 

The  Fleet  have  acted  a  noble  part.  Let  it  not  be  said 
hereafter  that  the  cause  of  all  America  was  injured  by  the 
supineness  of  the  northern  army.  Capt.  Lt.  Jones  of  the 
Artillery  will  return  to  the  side  of  Ticonderoga  and  Major 
Bigelow,  being  recovered  from  his  late  Indisposition,  will 
return  to  the  Command  of  the  Artillery  on  Mount  Inde- 

Head  Quarters,  Octr.  19,  1776. 

Lt.  Col".  Baldwin  ist  Engineer  will  take  the  Direction 
of  the  works  upon  the  side  of  Ticonderoga  with  the  following 
assistants  under  him.  Major  Paine,  Capt.  Newland,  Lt. 
Dallis,  and  Ensign  Parrett.  Lt.  Col°.  Pallifor,  2nd  Engi- 
neer will  take  Direction  of  the  works  upon  Mount  Inde- 
pendence with  the  following  assistants  under  him,  Capt. 
Patterson,  Mr.  Delezenne  and  two  other  gentlemen  that  the 
Col°^.  on  that  side  may  command.  This  arrangement  being 
settled  &  the  particular  works  to  be  completed,  determined 
upon,  the  General  has  no  doubt  but  the  necessary  prepara- 
tions for  a  vigorous  Defence  will  be  made  with  that  animated 
zeal  becoming  soldiers  who  are  also  citizens  of  America. 
Soldiers  whose  arms  have  been  wet  by  the  late  bad  weather 
and  cannot  be  drawn,  are  to  be  drawn  up  in  squads  in  proper 
places  half  an  hour  before  sunset,  and  there  discharge  their 
arms.  The  Regts.  who  want  ammunition  may  be  supplyed 
by  applying  to  Col".  Trumbull  D.  A.  G.  The  troops  have 
two  days  provisions  ready  dress'd  until  further  orders.  All 
the  spears  that  can  be  spared  from  the  vessels  to  be  deliv- 
ered for  the  Defence  of  the  French  Lines  &  Redoubts. 

As  this  campaign  was  drawing  to  a  close,  an 
effort  was  made  to  induce  the  soldiers   to  enlist 


for  the  war.       Of   this  Captain   Ford    makes   the 
following  record  :  — 

Head  Quarters,  Oct.  24,  1776. 
The  Commanding  Officers  of  the  Regt*.  are  directed  to 
i  lb.  of  buck  shott  for  every  man  fit  for  Duty  in  their  respec- 
tive Camps.  The  honorable,  the  Congress  of  the  United 
States  of  America  have  for  the  Reward  &  encouragement 
of  each  non  commissioned  Officer  &  Soldier  who  shall  en- 
gage to  serve  during  the  War,  further  resolved  to  give  every 
above  the  Bounty  of  20  Dollars  to  each  man  annually  with 
one  complete  suit  of  clothing  which  for  the  present  year  is 
to  consist  of  two  linen  hundng  shirts,  two  pair  stockings, 
2  pair  of  shoes,  two  pair  of  Overhalls,  a  leather  or  woolen 
jackett  with  sleeves,  one  pair  of  Breeches,  one  leather  cap 
or  hat  amounting  to  20  Dollars  in  the  whole  or  that  sum 
to  be  paid  each  soldier  who  shall  procure  those  Articles  for 
himself  &  produce  a  certificate  thereof  from  the  Capt.  of  the 
Company  to  the  Paymaster  of  the  Reg'"^" 

It  was  in  this  campaign  that  Rev.  William  Emer- 
son was  taken  ill  and  died.     (See  Chap.  XXIV.) 

The  names  of  the  patriots  of  Chelmsford  who 
responded  to  the  Lexington  alarm,  preserved  by 
Captain  Ford,  are  here  given,  together  with  the 
ntmiber  of  days  each  was  in  service,  in  order  that 
the  reader  may  more  clearly  understand  the  con- 
fused state  of  the  country  at  thal^  time  :  — 

Oliver  Barron,  Capt.,  16.  Jacob  Howard,  Private,  10. 

Samuel  Stevens,  Lieut.,  10.  Benjamin  Spaulding,  1 1. 

John  Ford,  Sergt.,  6.  David  Burge,  11. 

Benjamin  Warren,  Sergt.,  9.  Ephraim  Parkhurst,  ii. 

Silas  Spaulding,  Sergt.,  16.  Oliver  Richardson,  7. 

Jonas  Pierce,  Corl.,  6.  Daniel  Dammon,  18. 

John  Spaulding,  Drummer,  10.  Daniel  Sillaway,  9. 



Willard  Howard,  2. 
William  Bowers,  13. 
Josiah  Richardson,  3. 
John  Dunn,  3. 
John  Twiss,  3. 
Henry  Spaulding,  Jr., 
Joseph  Marshall,  5. 
Stephen  Pierce,  Jr.,  5. 
Samuel  Fletcher,  4. 
Joshua  Davis,  8. 
Oliver  Fletcher,  8. 
Jonathan  Peirce,  1 1. 
Nathaniel  Farrar,  9. 
Joseph  Taylor,  10. 
Thomas  Marshall,  Jr., 
William  Mears,  4. 
John  Roby,  17. 
Benjamin  Parkhurst,  3 
Moses  Barron,  15. 
John  Mears,  5. 
Jeremiah  Abbott,  5. 
Reuben  Parker,  13. 
David  Danforth,  4. 
Benjamin  Parker,  3. 

Amos  Mastes,  7. 
Isaac  Kent,  Jr.,  6. 
David  Marshall,  5. 

Benjamin  ,  5. 

Samuel  Marshall,  9. 
Daniel  Keyes,  6. 
John  Keyes,  6. 
William  Dunn,  4. 
Benjamin  Barrett,  6. 
James  Dunn,  Jr.,  8. 
Francis  Daverson,  7. 
Moses  Esterbrooks,  8. 
William  Cambel,  6. 
David  Chambers,  8. 
John  Chambers,  7. 
Jonathan  Sprague,  6. 
Isaiah  Foster,  Jr.,  6. 
Samuel  Britton,  6. 
William  Chambers,  3. 
Benjamin  Parker,  Jr., 
Benjamin  Pierce,  7. 
Josiah  Fletcher,  Jr.,  9 
Joseph  Spaulding,  6. 

It  was  on  the  22d  of  April,  1775,  that  the  Pro- 
vincial Congress  voted  to  raise  thirty  thousand 
men,  and  on  the  25th  John  Ford  had  enlisted  fifty- 
seven  men  —  a  company  of  which  he  was  made  cap- 
tain. Nineteen  pf  these  were  on  the  roll  of  those 
who  turned  out  on  April  19,  and  several  continued 
through  later  campaigns  with  their  trusted  leader, 
Captain  John  Ford.  In  the  burying-ground  near 
Pawtucket  Bridge,  a  plain  headstone  records  :  — 

DiEU  Nov.  6,  1822,  HL  84. 


Benjamin  Pierce,  afterward  General  Pierce  and 
the  father  of  President  Franklin  Pierce,  was  a  mem- 
ber of  Captain  Ford's  company.  Of  him  Joshua 
Merrill,  Esq.,  of  Lowell  says,  — 

"  He  was  born  in  Chelmsford,  now  Lowell, 
December  25,  1767.  He  was  bereft  of  his  father 
at  the  age  of  six  years,  and  was  taken  by  his 
uncle,  Robert  Pierce,  a  farmer,  .  .  .  He  remained 
with  his  uncle  until  April  19,  1775.  He  was  then 
ploughing  in  a  field  on  Powell  Street.  He  heard 
the  firing  of  guns,  and  soon  messengers  arrived 
notifying  the  inhabitants  of  the  battles  of  Lex- 
ington and  Concord.  Young  Pierce  was  then  in 
his  eighteenth  year.  He  chained  his  steers,  as 
he  called  them,  to  a  stump,  went  to  the  house, 
took  his  uncle's  gun  and  equipments,  and  started 
for  Concord  on  foot.  The  British  had  retreated 
before  he  reached  Concord.  He  enlisted  in  Cap- 
tain Ford's  company,  and  was  in  service  till  the 
close  of  the  war. 

"  In  one  of  the  battles,  when  the  bearer  of  the 
colors  was  shot,  young  Pierce  seized  the  colors, 
and  bore  them  to  the  front  during  the  conflict. 
In  subsequent  years.  Governor  Pierce,  when  he 
came  from  his  home  in  Hillsborough,  N.H.,  to 
Lowell  to  visit  his  old  friends,  took  delight  in 
pointing  out  to  them  the  stump  to  which,  on  April 
19'  1/75'  he  hitched  his  steers." 







HAYWARD      HOME      THE      OLD      GARRISON.  OLD 

HOME     OF     THE     BYAMS      SINCE      1655.  THOMAS 



Chelmsford  is  peculiarly  favored  in  the  un- 
broken family  possession  of  its  old  farms.  The 
first  visited  in  my  circuit  of  this  ancient  settle- 
ment is  the  Perham  homestead. 

The  first  white  settler  on  this  ferm  was  John 
Perham.  He  married  in  1664  Lydia  Shepley, 
who  had  come  with  her  parents  in  the  Wenham 

When  the  Perham  pioneer  began  to  subdue 
these  acres,  the  apostle  Eliot  was  looking  after 
the  interests  of  the  Indians  here ;  and  a  company 
of  Mr.  Perham's  neighbors  were  trustees  for  the 
aborio-inal  owners  of  the  soil,  of  what  is  now  the 


town  of  Chelmsford  and  the  city  of  Lowell,  and 
even  beyond  their  limits.  "■  The  first  dwelling," 
says  Mr.  Perham,  the  present  thrifty  owner  and 
occupant,  '*  was  doubtless  one  of  the  rudely  con- 
structed houses  of  the  times,  but  compared  favor- 
ably with  that  erected  by  him  and  the  other  settlers 
for  their  minister,  Rev.  John  Fisk,  who  had  come 
from  Wenham.     The  plan  for  the  minister's  house 


Perham  Homestead,  Chelmsford 

is  thus  indicated  ;  '  And  we  do  agree  and  order 
that  he  shall  have  a  house  built  for  him,  thirty- 
eight  feet  in  length,  and  twenty-four  in  breadth, 
with  three  fire  rooms.  The  chimney  built  with 
brick  or  stone.'  " 

After  enduring  the  hardships  of  pioneer  life, 
and  struggling  nobly  for  existence  for  more  than 
a  half  century  in  this  locality,  Mrs.  Lydia  Perham 
died  in  17 10,  and  was  followed  by  her  husband  in 
1 72 1.     They  were  succeeded  on  the  farm  by  a  son. 


Benoni  Perham,  who  with  Sarah  Robbins,  his  wife, 
was  contented  in  the  original  house  until  their 
son  Samuel  erected  a  more  comfortable  dwelling, 
which,  with  modern  improvements,  has  sheltered 
seven  generations.  The  two  who  succeed  the 
present  owner  make  nine  who  have  dwelt  there. 
"Our  family  had  been  located  here  a  full  cen- 
tury," said  the  present  owner,  '*  when  the  drum 
beat  to  arms  on  April  19,  1775."  The  hero  of  the 
family  at  that  distressing  time  was  Samuel,  senior, 
who  served  the  patriot  cause  on  the  Committee  of 
Safety  and  in  the  Provincial  convention  at  Con- 
cord. His  sons  Samuel  and  Oliver  were  among 
those  who  shouldered  their  muskets,  and  served 
in  the  company  from  this  town. 

Another  old  homestead  visited  was  the  Spaul- 
ding  farm.  The  Spauldings  were  in  the  town 
among  the  first  settlers.  Edward  Spaulding  was 
there  before  the  incorporation  in  1655,  "^^^^  ^^^^ 
among  those  selected  in  November,  1654,  "by  the 
consent  of  the  major  part  of  the  town  for  ordering 
the  Public  affairs."  He  belonged  to  that  colony, 
who,  with  their  minister,  left  Wenham  in  Essex 
County,  and  did  good  service  in  establishing  the 
church  and  town  that  have  made  a  most  com- 
mendable record  for  two  hundred  and  forty  years. 
Ten  generations  of  the  Spaulding  family  are  re- 
corded as  having  resided  in  Chelmsford,  and  fig- 
ured in  the  history  of  the  town.  I  met,  among 
others  of  the  family,  Mr.  George  Spaulding,  busily 


occupied  in  tilling  his  acres.  He  said,  ''  My  father 
was  Alpheus,  and  his  father  was  Joseph  Spaul- 
ding,  who  left  this  farm  in  response  to  the  call 
of  April  19,  1775,  and  who  gained  some  notoriety 
in  the  battle  of  Bunker  Hill.  You  have  read  the 
inscription  on  the  slab  at  his  grave,  which  gives 

Spaulding  Home,  Chelmsford 

only  a  part  of  my  grandfather's  story.  His  own 
report  of  it  was,  'I  fired  ahead  of  time,  and  Put- 
nam rushed  up  and  struck  at  me  for  violating  or- 
ders. I  suppose  I  deserved  it,  but  I  was  anxious 
to  get  another  good  shot  at  Gage's  men  ever 
since  our  affair  at  Concord.  The  blow  from  ''  Old 
Put  "  hit  me  on  the  head,  made  a  hole  in  my  hat, 
and  left  this  scar;'  and,"  said  the  grandson,  "it 



was  an  honorable  scar.  Grandfather  was  proud 
of  it,  and  carried  it  to  his  grave."  Mr.  George 
Spaulding,  who  is  of  the  eighth  generation,  con- 
tinued his  story,  *'  My  grandfather  was  living  at 
that  time  in  an  old  house  on  this  farm,  and  had 

just  raised  the  frame 
of  this  dwelling  when 
he  was  called  to  do 
a  patriot's  duty  away 
from  these  acres. 
When  the  house  was 
completed  he  moved 
into  it  with  grand- 
mother and  the  chil- 
dren, one  of  whom 
was  my  father ;  and 
the  Revolutionary 
roof  has  already  shel- 
tered five  generations 
of  Spauldings." 

To  make  his  grand- 
father's part  at  Bunker  Hill  more  vivid,  Mr.  Spaul- 
ding brought  from  the  house  a  silver  watch,  ticking 
with  as  much  regularity  as  it  was  on  the  morning 
of  June  17,  1775,  when  Joseph  Spaulding  aimed 
his  fowling-piece  at  Major  Pitcairn.  Said  the 
proud  descendant,  ''My  grandfather  brought  the 
watch  to  this  house  ;  and  here  it  has  been  kept 
ever  since,  often  proving  more  reliable  than  some 
modern  timepieces." 

Spaulding  Watch,  used  at 
Bunker  Hill 


111  confirmation  of  Mr.  Spaulding's  story  of  the 
cocked  hat,  Mrs.  Luther  Faulkner  of  Billerica 
says,  "It  was  one  of  the  delights  of  my  childhood 
to  play  in  that  old  garret  with  my  companions,  the 
grandchildren  of  Joseph  Spaulding.  It  was  the 
storeroom  of  scores  of  articles  that  dated  back  to 
the  early  generations  of  the  family.  There  were 
the  rude  implements  of  the  farm,  the  cast-off 
utensils  of  the  kitchen,  and  many  articles  of  hus- 
bandry that  time  had  relegated  to  that  lumber- 
room.  Oh,  what  a  pleasure  it  was  for  us  children, 
on  a  rainy  day,  to  amuse  ourselves  among  those 
relics !  The  flax  cards,  the  hatchel,  the  reel,  the 
wheels  great  and  small,  were  all  put  to  our  child- 
ish service.  Then  a  season  was  spent  in  playing 
soldier,  but  the  boys  thought  the  girls  had  no  part 
in  that.  '  Grandsir's  '  cocked  hat  was  brousfht  from 
its  hiding-place  ;  and  each  boy  in  turn,  crowned 
with  the  tattered  relic,  marched  up  and  down  the 
garret  floor.  'Just  as  Grandsir  Spaulding  marched 
at  Bunker  Hill,'  was  the  childish  order.  It  had 
received  holes  through  the  crown,  and  '  grandsir ' 
was  proud  of  them ;  but  the  old  soldier  of  1775  was 
gone,  and  I  am  afraid  we  were  rough  with  his  hat. 
The  hat  and  all  else  in  that  ancient  garret  were 
consumed  by  fire  ;  yet  the  memory  of  those  days, 
and  particularly  of  the  old  cocked  hat,  will  remain 
as  long  as  life  lasts." 

Another  most  interesting  representative  of  the 
Spaulding  family  is  Mrs.  Mary  (  Spaulding)  Shedd, 



who,  at  the  age  of  ninety-three  years,  delights  in 
repeating  the  stories  heard  from  the  lips  of  her 
grandfather,  Zebulon  Spaulding,  who  was  one  of 
the  minute-men  of  the  town.      The  story  of  the 

opening  Revolu- 
tion, as  she  tells 
it,  confirms  that 
already  given,  and 
her  personal  rec- 
ollections of  the 
second  war  with 
England  are  as 
vivid  as  are  those 
of  the  Civil  War. 
Said  this  venera- 
ble member  of 
the  family,  *'My 
father  was  Shere- 
biah  Spaulding." 
In  regard  to  the 
second  trouble 
with  England, 
she  said,  "The 
early  spirit  of  pa- 
triotism  was 
quickly  kindled 
in  his  breast,  as  in  others  of  Chelmsford.  He 
presented  a  most  charming  appearance  to  my 
youthful  eyes,  when  he  was  equipped  in  his  bril- 
liant uniform,  and  ready  to  march  to  Boston.     I 

Mrs.  Shedd 


was  too  young  to  fully  realize  what  the  war-cry 
meant ;  but  there  were  those  in  our  family  who  re- 
called the  sufferings  of  Concord,  Bunker  Hill,  and 
Valley  Forge,  and  with  tearful  faces  stood  by  as 
the  soldiers  went  away,  while  the  old  fire  of  pa- 
triotism was  rekindled  in  their  breasts  ;  but  their 
forms  were  too  much  bowed  with  age  to  again  face 
the  enemy." 

This  delightful  lady  of  the  old  school,  on  her 
ninety-third  birthday,  remarked,  "I  have  known 
eight  generations  of  my  family,  and  have  seen  an 
entire  change  in  the  manner  of  conducting  domes- 
tic matters,  as  well  as  business  affairs.  I  have 
seen  the  loom  and  wheel,  which  were  kept  in 
action  in  each  family,  give  way  to  the  innumerable 
looms  and  spindles  of  the  city  of  Lowell,  which 
has  sprung  into  existence  since  I  came  to  ma- 

I  was  next  conducted  to  the  Hayward  farm, 
where  five  generations  of  the  family  have  flour- 
ished, Miss  Adelia  Hayward  being  the  present 
owner.  Miss  Hayward  said  that  her  great-grand- 
father came  to  this  house  in  1726.  Here  in  the 
walls  are  unmistakable  evidences  of  the  garrison 
of  the  early  wars  ;  and  the  chimney  of  stone,  such 
as  the  settlers  agreed  to  build  in  the  minister's 
house  in  1654,  is  suggestive  of  a  stronghold. 
There  is  the  hollow  passage-way  by  the  side  of 
the  rough  stone,  allowing  free  passage  from  the 
bottom  of  the  cellar  to  the  chimney  top.     It  was 


to  be  used  for  concealment,  and  for  an  outlook 
whereby  to  discern  the  approach  of  danger.  This 
place,  and  all  such  in  old  houses,  are  always  de- 
lightfully suggestive  and  interesting.  Here  the 
rude  ladder,  over  which  generations  of  Haywards 
have  climbed,  adds  to  the  interest  of  the  place. 

UaVWAIUj    (JAKKISuN,    Clll,LAISMjRb 

An  aged  neighbor  is  a  frequent  visitor  at  this 
house,  who  says  her  mother  often  told  her  that 
it  is  the  place  where  the  women  went  for  safety 
when  the  Indians  were  out. 

The  Hayvvard  family  has  flourished  here  for  one 
hundred  and  seventy  years  ;  yet  they  are  modern 
in  the  town  in  comparison  with  the  Adams  family. 



of  whom  the  farm  was  purchased  a  half  century 
before  the  Revolution.  The  name  of  Thomas 
Adams  is  seen  in  connection  with  the  settlement 
in  1653,  and  Samuel  Adams  was  early  chosen 
as  the  town  clerk.  The  descendants  have  been 
among  those  who  have  made  a  record  as  good 
patriots  through  all  these  years,  both  in  Chelms- 
ford and  elsewhere. 

Byam  Home,  Chelmsford 

The  Byam  estate  is  one  that  has  been  in  the 
family  since  the  first  settlement  of  the  town.  The 
name  of  George  Byam  appears  in  the  list  of  those 
who  came  from  Wenham  in  165$.  He  located 
on  the  farm  where  the  ninth  generation  is  met 
to-day.  The  pioneer  wisely  selected  his  land 
where  there  was  an   abundant  supply  of  running 


water;  and  Beaver  Brook,  that  wound  on  its  course 
through  his  meadows,  has  continued  of  service 
to  eacli  of  the  generations  in  their  time.  How 
early  the  stream  was  given  that  name  does  not 
appear;   but  in  January,   1659,  we   find:  — 

"  George  Biam  and  Thomas  Barrett  are  appointed  a  com- 
mittee to  state  a  Highway  that  gos  to  Tadmuck  before  Thomas 
Chamberlain's  hous.  The  tree  at  his  Hog's  Coat  is  con- 
ckided  one  bound,  and  so  to  Run  his  due  bredth  acording 
to  order,  towards  the  Broak  Cold  Beaver  hroak." 

George  Byam,  the  first,  had  three  sons,  whom  he 
named  for  the  Jewish  patriarchs,  Abraham,  Isaac, 
and  Jacob.  But  instead  of  representing  three 
successive  generations,  they  were  of  one  and  the 
same  ;  yet  the  promise  to  Abraham  of  okl  was  ver- 
ified here,  and  there  has  not  been  wanting  a  son 
to  continue  the  family  name  and  possession.  We 
find  Amos,  of  the  fifth  generation,  with  his  wife, 
Sarah  Pierce,  located  in  the  original  dwelling  of 
only  two  rooms,  one  above  the  other.  This  house 
has  been  preserved  ;  and  there  are  pointed  out 
to-day  the  four  corners  where  the  loom,  fireplace, 
wheel,  and  bed  were  located. 


Very  near  the  centre  of  Chelmsford  is  the  War- 
ren homestead.  This  estate  belonired  to  Thomas 
Hinchman,  who  was  an  influential  man  in  the  early 
days.      In  the  year   1699  ^^^  deeded  it  to  the  first 


Joseph  Warren.  A  portion  of  the  original  house, 
more  than  two  hundred  years  old,  is  disguised  in 
a  more  modern  dwelling,  which  identifies  the  spot 
where  the  first  hearth-stone  was  placed.  So  large 
was  the  original  farm  that  it  admitted  of  divisions 
and  subdivisions,  and  several  families  of  the  name 
or  blood  are  settled  there  in  the  enjoyment  of  a 
competency.  For  nearly  two  centuries  there  has 
been  a  Joseph  Warren  on  the  farm.  The  donor 
of  the  farm  is  pleasantly  remembered  in  the  name 
of  one  of  the  present  generation,  who  is  Edwin 
Henchman  Warren.  The  family  has  ever  enjoyed 
the  confidence  of  its  contemporaries,  each  gene- 
ration doing  the  part  of  true  patriotic  citizens. 
Among  the  treasures  of  early  military  service  held 
by  the  family  at  the  old  homestead  are  a  musket 
and  a  halberd,  which  doubtless  date  back  to  the 
time  when  Jeduthan  Warren  served  in  the  north- 
ern campaign  in  1776,  with  a  large  company,  under 
Captain  John  Ford.  The  Lexington  alarm  called 
Sergeant  Benjamin  Warren  from  the  old  home. 
He  was  in  Captain  Oliver  Barron's  company,  and 
actively  engaged  in  the  running  fight  of  April  19, 


The  first  Joseph  Warren,  born  in  1670,  pos- 
sessed a  copy  of  ''The  General  Laws  of  the  Massa- 
chusetts Colony,  Revised  and  published  by  order 
of  the  General  Court,  in  October  1658."  This 
volume  has  been  kept  by  the  successive  Josephs, 
and  is  now  one  of  the  family  treasures.     It  is  be- 


lieved  to  have  been  the  property  of  Jacob  Warren, 
the  pioneer  of  the  family. 


About  two  miles  north  of  the  centre  of  Chelms- 
ford is  the  early  home  of  the  Richardson  family, 
where  I  met  Mr.  Edward  F.  Richardson,  who 
modestly  said,  "  I  am  of  the  seventh  generation  in 
a  direct  line  of  our  family  in  possession  of  this 
farm.  The  first  was  Josiah,  who,  with  the  other 
male  inhabitants,  petitioned  on  May  17,  1658,  the 
'  honored  Court  Assembled  at  Boston  '  for  the 
privilege  of  trading  with  the  Indians.  They  rep- 
resent themselves  as  located  '  into  this  Rcmoat 
Corner  of  the  wilderness.'  "  Says  the  present 
owner,  '*  My  pioneer  ancestor  built  his  log  house 
in  the  south  side  of  this  great  sand-bank,  and  here 
located  with  his  family.  He  was  succeeded  by 
John,  Eleazer,  and  Samuel,  who  represented  as 
many  successive  generations.  Each  in  turn,  with 
his  family,  enjoyed  and  improved  the  homestead, 
doing  manfully  their  part  in  church  and  govern- 
ment. It  was  Oliver,  son  of  Samuel,  my  grand- 
father, who  responded  from  this  place  to  the 
Lexington  alarm.  He  was  but  sixteen  years  of 
age  when  he  was  found  in  Captain  Barron's  com- 
pany in  pursuit  of  the  Regulars.  He  was  among 
those  who  fought  down  by  the  rail  fence  on  June 
17,  at  Charlestown.  He  had  a  great  powder-horn  ; 
and  he  always  said,  *I  had  a  plenty  of  ammunition 


when  the  others  had  none  ;  for  my  horn  was  well 
filled  with  my  own  stock  from  home,  and  I  used  it 
to  the  best  advantage  possible  on  that  morning-  at 
Charlestown.'  Oliver  was  not  disheartened  by 
these  early  experiences,  but  was  found  with  the 
Chelmsford  men  in  the  campaign  at  the  north 
when  Burgoyne  was  obliged  to  give  up  his  enter- 
prise. Oliver,  the  young  soldier,  was  succeeded 
by  his  son  Francis,  from  whom  the  present  gene- 
ration received  the  estate." 

The  Adams  family  early  made  a  record  in 
Chelmsford  ;  and  many  of  that  name  to-day 
revert  to  the  mother  town  as  the  place  of  their 
origin,  while  the  patriotic  deeds  of  their  ances- 
tors for  two  centuries  are  an  inspiration  to  them. 

"  The  family  of  Adam  or  Adams  (meaning  red  ;  adamah, 
red  earth)  can  clahii  the  distinction  of  having  the  oldest 
individual  name  on  record.'*  —  Adams  Genealogy. 

Two  sons  of  Henry  Adams,  the  immigrant 
leader  who  settled  in  Braintree,  were  among  the 
founders  of  Chelmsford.  Thomas,  born  in  161 2, 
was  well  established  with  a  large  family  when  he 
was  received  as  a  member  of  the  Chelmsford 
Church,  ''27''^  of  2^  '56."  Samuel,  born  161 7,  was 
the  father  of  a  family  when  he  appears  as  town 
clerk  of  Chelmsford. 

They  did .  a  grand  work  here  during  the  re- 
mainder of  their  lives.  The  former  died  in  1666, 
and  the  latter  in  1676. 


Samuel  Adams  was  the  first  miller  of  the  town. 
On  July  3,  1656,  he  was  granted  four  hundred 
acres  of  land  to  encourage  him  to  set  up  a  saw- 
mill, and  later  he  had  one  hundred  acres  more 
for  erecting  a  corn-mill.  These  mills  marked  a 
new  era  in  the  building  of  houses,  as  well  as  the 
preparation  of  grains  for  food.  It  was  on  a  com- 
manding site  just  beyond  the  brook  that  the  miller 
erected  his  dwelling.  Seven  generations  occupied 
the  farm,  and  presided  at  the  mill  ;  but  it  has  now 
passed  into  other  hands,  as  have  homesteads  of 
other  branches  of  the  family.  It  is  apparent  that 
the  Adams  family  of  Chelmsford  was  connected 
with  Samuel  Adams  the  patriot,  and  it  is  interest- 
ing that  the  two  branches  should  have  been  so 
positive  in  espousing  the  cause  of  the  patriots  in 
the  Revolution.  Pelatiah  Adams  from  this  town, 
who  died  in  the  service  of  his  country  at  Cherry 
Valley,  is  remembered  by  the  monument  on  the 
Common  in  his  native  town  ;  while  Samuel,  the 
leader  in  the  Revolution,  sleeps  in  Granary  Bury- 
ing-Ground  in  Boston,  with  no  slab  to  remind 
the  passing  stranger  of  the  brave  patriot.  The 
Adams  Library  at  Chelmsford  is  a  fitting  memorial 
of  not  only  the  donor,  but  of  all  the  descendants 
of  the  early  settlers  at  Chelmsford  by  the  name  of 

The  name  of  Parkhurst  first  appeared  in  this 
town  in  1658,  and  the  family  is  one  of  the  most  nu- 
merously represented  to-day.    Joseph,  from  Water- 


town,  was  the  founder  here.  He  married  Mary 
Read,  and  settled  on  his  share  of  the  "  New 
Field."  He  was  succeeded  by  his  son  Ebenezer. 
Then  came  Jonathan,  who  was  born  in  1701, 
married  Hannah  Richardson  in  1724,  and  died  in 
1737,  leaving  a  widow  and  seven  children.  Of 
these  Josiah  continued  the  family  line  in  the 
town.  He  married  Elizabeth  King.  Samuel,  one 
of  the  four  children,  was  a  noted  patriot  among 
the  many  of  the  town,  acted  well  his  part  in  the 
various  campaigns,  and  lived  to  a  great  age.  He 
was  fond  of  fighting  over  his  battles  by  the  fire- 
side, to  the  delight  of  not  only  his  own  descen- 
dants, but  of  the  many  who  were  inspired  by  his 
patriotic  zeal  to  do  valiant  service  for  town  and 
country.  A  sword  captured  by  the  patriot  Sam- 
uel, together  with  his  musket,  are  treasured  relics 
of  the  family. 


A  most  peculiar  interest  centres  at  the  Fletcher 
farm.  The  first  pulsations  of  civilized  life  in  the 
town  are  traced  to  this  homestead.  The  name  of 
William  Fletcher  is  seen  with  others  on  the  peti- 
tion of  May,  1653,  for  a  grant  of  six  miles  square 
''  which  bordereth  upon  Merrimack  River  near  to 
Pautucket,  which  we  do  find  a  very  comfortable 
place  to  accommodate  a  company  of  God's  people 


upon  ;  that  may  with  God's  blessing  and  assis- 
tance Uve  comfortably  upon  and  do  good  in  that 
place  for  church  and  commonwealth."  The  peti- 
tion was  granted  eight  days  later,  May  18,  1653, 
on  conditions  that  a  reservation  should  be  made 
for  the  Indians,  through  the  intercession  of  the 
apostle  Eliot. 

"Captain  Bill  Fletcher's"  House 

The  common  lands  were  allotted  to  the  settlers, 
William  Fletcher  being  one  of  them.  He  was  a 
son  of  Robert  of  Concord,  born  in  England,  and 
made  a  freeman  in  the  Colony  in  1643.  He  mar- 
ried Lydia^  Bates  of  Concord,  and  they  set  up 
their  home  in  this  wilderness  in  1653.  Tradition 
tells  us  that  the  house  to  which  William  Fletcher 
conducted  his  trustful  bride  was  the  first  in  the 


settlement  having  the  pretensions  of  a  frame,  and 
was  distinguished  as  having  been  the  place  of  the 
first  town  meeting. 

The  22d  :  the  9th  :  month:   1654. 

At  a  meeting  then  at  WiUiam  Fletcher's  Hous  there  was 
chosen  to  officiate  in  Ordering  the  PubHck  affairs  of  the 
Place,  by  the  Consent  of  the  Major  part  of  the  Town  for  this 
present  year  ensuing  are  as  followeth  :  —  Esdras  Read ;  Ed- 
ward Spaulding ;  William  Fletcher  ;  Isaac  Lerned  ;  Simon 
Thompson ;  William  Underwood  ;  Thomas  Adams.  They 
also  set  apart  thirty  acres  of  land  for  the  minister,  and  pro- 
vided for  his  house. 

William  the  pioneer  was  of  the  second  genera- 
tion in  the  country,  and  acted  a  prominent  part  in 
the  affairs  of  town  and  Colony  until  his  death  in 
November,  1677.  He  was  succeeded  on  this  farm 
by  a  son  William,  born  four  years  after  the  first 
settlement ;  but  he  was  not  made  a  freeman  until 
twelve  years  after  his  father,  William,  died.  Gov- 
ernor Dudley  commissioned  him  a  lieutenant  in 
1704,  which  position  he  honorably  filled  until  his 
death  in  171 3.  Although  the  pioneer  here  was 
not  honored  with  military  titles,  yet  his  record  is 
with  the  faithful  patriots  of  the  early  days  of  the 
Colony.  Josiah  of  the  fourth  generation  was  the 
next  in  order  on  the  farm  ;  and  he  was  succeeded 
by  a  son  Josiah,  born  October  30,  1719. 

While  each  generation  has  continued  the  name 
of  William,  other  names  have  appeared  in  the  line 
of  possession  of  the  farm.     In  the  sixth  generation 


William  asserts  his  birthright.  He  was  born  De- 
cember 22,  1754.  His  cradle  lullaby  was  of  the 
conquered  French,  and  in  his  maturity  a  military 
spirit  actuated  him.  He  was  one  of  four  Fletchers 
to  respond  to  the  Lexington  alarm.  His  family 
story  repeated  by  his  great-great-grandson  William 
is  :  — 

"  I  was  one  of  those  who  stepped  over  the 
body  of  the  first  British  soldier  killed  at  Concord 
Bridge,  when  was  made  'the  first  forcible  resis- 
tance to  British  aggression.'  " 

The  musket  carried  in  the  war  by  one  of  the 
family  is  still  treasured  at  the  old  home  by  Wil- 
liam of  the  tenth  generation.  This  musket  has 
never  been  robbed  of  the  old  flint-lock  and  the 
primitive  arrangements  of  Colonial  days.  Oliver 
Fletcher,  the  famous  town  clerk,  v/as  of  the  fifth 
generation  ;  and  his  record  is  among  those  who 
did  faithful  service  for  his  native  town. 

William,  the  hero  of  April  19,  '75,  married,  dur- 
ing the  years  of  the  Revolution,  Lucy  Hildrith  ; 
and  thus  the  two  old  and  influential  families 
were  united.  William  of  the  seventh  generation, 
their  son,  was  born  May  18,  1782,  and  married 
in  181 5  to  Orpha  Spaulding,  thus  making  a  con- 
nection with  another  of  the  oldest  families  of  the 
town.  This  William  died  in  1846,  and  was  gath- 
ered to  the  grave  with  his  fathers  on  the  hill. 
His  successor  was  William,  born  in  18 19.  He 
brought  as  a  helpmeet  to  the  old  home,  Diantha 


E.  Dustin  of  New  Hampshire,  and  second,  Eliza 
A.  Warren  of  Chelmsford.  Having  made  a  good 
record  in  the  town,  State  legislature,  etc.,  he  re- 
signed the  family  home  in  1893  to  Charles  Fred- 
eric of  the  ninth  generation,  who  was  born  on 
Independence  Day,  1846,  in  time  to  receive  his 
grandfather's  parting  blessing.  He  dedicated  him- 
self to  the  cause  of  preserving  the  Union  early  in 
the  War  of  the  Rebellion,  and  kept  good  the  record 
of  patriotism  begun  by  his  ancestors. 

The  next  in  line  of  this  family  is  William  of  the 
tenth  generation,  who  was  born  in  1872,  and  mar- 
ried to  Jenny  A.  Fulton  on  New  Year's  Day  of 
1893.  A  representative  of  the  eleventh  genera- 
tion in  the  country,  and  the  tenth  on  this  farm, 
is  Rachel  Fulton  Fletcher.  This  babe  is  cradled 
within  a  few  rods  of  the  site  of  the  first  house 
built  by  William  Fletcher  in  1653.  Different 
branches  of  the  family  have  set  up  homes  on  the 
paternal  acres,  the  oldest  of  which  is  a  red  house 
with  a  gambrel  roof.  It  is  in  much  the  same  con- 
dition as  when  ''Uncle  Bill"  Fletcher,  at  ninety 
years  of  age,  used  to  gather  his  children  and 
grandchildren  about  the  old  hearth-stone,  and  tell 
his  story  of  personal  experience  at  Concord,  and 
in  the  other  events  of  the  19th  of  April,  '75,  and 
of  his  service  with  Captain  Ford  in  the  northern 
campaign  of   1777. 

Not  "  a  man  is  now  alive, 

Who  remembers  that  famous  day  and  year;" 


but  it  comes  to  us  with  double  reality  when  told 
on  such  homesteads,  and  from  lips  first  taught  to 
lisp  the  word  patriot  by  those  who  fought  for  in- 
dependence at  Concord  and  Bunker  Hill. 

Having  traced  the  footprints  of  early  and  later 
patriots  at  the  old  homesteads,  we  naturally  turn 
to  the  old  burial-ground  where  — 

"Their  names,  their  years,  spelt  by  the  unlettered  muse, 
The  place  of  fame  and  elegy  supply." 

Chelmsford  proper  has  but  one  burying-place  ; 
and  in  this  ground,  a  gracefully  sloping  enclosure 
hard  by  the  meeting-house,  has  been  gathered  the 
dust  of  many  generations.  '*  Quaint  inscriptions, 
the  traditional  death's  head  and  hour-glass,  greet 
you  on  every  hand." 

The  oldest  stone  is  — 

Here  Lyes  y*^  Body  of  Grace 
LiuERMOAR  Wife  to  Ihon 
LiuERMOAR  Aged  75  Years 
Died  the  14TH  of  January 


This  and  other  stones  in  that  enclosure  show 
tliat  the  town  had  among  its  brave  founders  those 
who  were  born  before  the  Pilgrims  landed  at 

A  rudely  carved  and  sunken  stone,  standing  in 
its   fastness   with   but    little   regard   for   its   more 



ii_|Pif»iai^r^ ^ ^ ^-^as-**^ 

Major  Thomas  Hinchman's  Military  Order 

{Original  ozvned  by  the  author.) 



Near  by  is  another  small   but  suggestive  stone 
on  which  is  read  :  — 

Here  Lyes  y^  Body  of 


Aged  75  Years 

Died  Jan.  3  1700. 

The  memory  of  the  Just  is  Blessed. 

Cornelius  Waldo  Stone 

His  daughter  Re- 
becca married  Ed- 
ward Emerson,  a 
teacher  for  a  time 
in  Chelmsford.  This 
shows  us  how  the 
name  of  Waldo  was 
introduced  into  the 
Emerson  family. 

Evidence  of  the 
youthfulness  of  sol- 
diers in  the  Revolu- 
tion is  gathered  from 

a  stone  on  which  is  chiselled  :  — 

erected  to  the  memory  of 


Born  March  1762, 

Died  November  15,  1835. 

A  Revolutionary  Pensioner,  Honorably  discharged,  from 
the  first  three  years  service  of  his  Country 
May  1780,  at  the  early  age  of 
18  yrs.  &  2  mos. 

All  honest  man. 


This  man  enlisted  to  the  credit  of  the  town  of 
Westford.  But  among  his  descendants  is  Mrs. 
Parkhurst  of  Chehiisford,  who  treasures  not  only 
her  grandfather's  stories  of  the  war,  but  also  a  fork 
made  by  the  young  soldier  when  in  service,  and  a 
small  volume  brought  from  the  army,  which  was 
printed  in  Dublin  in  1776. 

On  a  stone  to  the  memory  of  Mrs.  Hannah 
Foster  is  read  :  — 


Son  of  Mr.  William  and  Mrs.   Hannah  Foster 

Who  Died  at  Stillwater  in  the  Service  of  his 

Country,  Octr,  ye  7th  1777, 

Aged  20  Years. 

Among  the  six  generations  of  Perhams,  the 
patriot  Samuel  has  an  honored  place.  He  died 
March  2,  1788,  aged  31  years  and  6  months. 

At  the  grave  of  the  pioneer  of  the  family  is 
read :  — 

Here  Lyes  ye  Body  of 


Who  Deceased  Janu'^'^  ye  21'^'^  1721 

Aged  88  Years. 

The  pioneer  pastor.  Rev.  John  Fisk,  sleeps  in  an 
unmarked  grave,  unless  a  large  table-stone  with- 
out inscription  was  intended  to  mark  his  place  of 
sepulture.  But  he  is  remembered  for  his  unself- 
ish patriotic  acts. 

The  second  minister,  Rev.  Thomas  Clark,  who 



died  in  1704,  is  memorialized  by  a  tablet  on  which 
is  read  an  extended  Latin  inscription.  The  stone 
was  purchased  by  "  a  gift  of  fifty  shillings  from 
sundry  persons  in  Chelmsford,"  as  appears  by  a 
receipt  from  Rev.  John  Hancock  of  Lexington, 
who  married  a  daughter  of  Rev.  Thomas  Clark, 

We  here  sret  a  hint  of  the  manner  in  which  the 
families  of  the  clergymen  of  early  New  England 
were  joined   in   marriage,   and   a   sort  of   literary 

aristocracy  created. 
The  second  wife  of 
Rev.  Thomas  Clark 
was  a  daughter  of 
Rev.  Samuel  Whiting 
of  Billerica.  In  fol- 
lowing down  the  line 
from  Chelmsford,  we 
find  that  a  daughter 
of  Rev.  John  Han- 
cock and  grandaughter  of  Rev.  Thomas  Clark 
became  the  wife  of  Rev.  Nicholas  Bowes  of 
Bedford,  and  that  a  daughter  from  the  Bedford 
parsonage  became  the  wife  of  Rev.  Jonas  Clark 
of  Lexington,  and  so  was  mistress  of  the  Lexing- 
ton parsonage  during  the  Revolution.  A  second 
daughter  from  the  Bedford  parsonage  became  the 
wife  of  Rev.  Phinehas  Whitney  of  Shirley,  and 
served  that  people  from  1770  to  1805. 

The  fourth  minister  of  Chelmsford,  Rev.  Eben- 
ezer  Bridge,  married  a  daughter  of  his  immediate 

Minister's  Table,  Chelmsford 


predecessor  in  office,  Rev.  Samson  Stoddard  ;  and 
their  daughter  Sarah  married  Rev.  Henry  Cum- 
mings  of  Billerica.  Among  the  scores  of  stones 
at  the  graves  of  the  patriots  of  1775  which  afford 
no  hint  of   their  peculiar  service   is  one  — 



In  testimony  of  their  esteem  and  veneration  this  sepultrial  stone  was 

erected  to  stand  as  a  sacred  memorial  of  their  late 

worthy  Pastor 


who  after  having  officiated  among  them  in  the  service  of  the  sanctuary 

for  more  than  a  year  above  half  a  century,  the  strength  of  nature 

being  exhausted,  sunk  under  the  burden  of  age  and 

joined  the  congregation  of  the  dead. 

Oct.   I,  1792.     ^.  78. 

Chehnsford's  patriotic  minister  was  represented 
by  his  son  and  namesake,  Ebenezer  Bridge,  a 
graduate  of  Harvard  University,  who  did  good 
service  on  April  19th  and  June  I7th.^  The  min- 
ister was  faithful  in  looking  out  for  the  comfort 
of  the  poor  of  Boston,  of  whom  forty-nine  were 
consigned  to  Chelmsford  at  one  time.  There  were 
also  among  his  parishioners  those  who  had  come 
out  on  their  own  account  to  seek  a  place  of  safety. 

April (),  lyjS'  Capt.  Symmes  came  from  Boston  to  se- 
cure a  place  of  retreat  in  the  present  troublesome  season  at 

1  See  "  Beneath  Old  Roof  Trees,"  page  240, 



The  pastor  records  the  death  of  Mr.  Fitzgerald, 
who  lived  in  town  since  the  siege  of  Boston.  Rev. 
Mr.  Bridge  was  among  the  faithful  ministers  who 
went  to  camp  to  look  after  their  townsmen  during 
the  sieire  of  Boston.     He  records  :  — 

May  29,  1775.     Rode  to  Cambridge  and  lodged  with  en- 
sign Hastings  at  the  headquarters  of  the  army. 

May  30.  Visited 
our  soldiers,  dined  at 
Capt.  Steadman's  by 
invitation.  Met  and 
delighted  with  the  ap- 
pearance and  order. 
Saw  the  spoils  taken 
at  Chelsea  from  the 

The  sculptor 
did  his  best  work 
in  the  execution 
of  customary  em- 
blems on  a  stone 
to  the  memory  of 
a  clerk  of  the 
town,  whose  rec- 
ords are  a  source 

of  delight   to  every  one  who  has  an   occasion  to 

study  them. 

"  Memento  Mori.'''' 


Departed  this  Life  Nov.  30,  1771,  in  the  63^  Year  of  his 

Age^  and  his  Remains  are  here  Interred. 

To  the  Memory  of  the  Town- 
Clerk,  Chelmsford 



most  notable  couple 
to  the  scene  of  action. 
Jonas  Clark  was  the 
eldest  son  of  Rev. 
Thomas  Clark,  born 
in  1684,  and  was  early 
trained  to  walk  in  the 
strait  and  narrow  way 
by  a  genuine  New 
England  clergyman. 
He  doubtless  disap- 
pointed his  father  in 
not  following  him  in  a 

There  are  two  me- 
morial stones  in  this 
ancient  burying- 
ground,  which  for 
position,  design,  ex- 
ecution, and  preser- 
vation prompt  a 
stranger  to  a  dili- 
gent inquiry.  They 
mark  the  graves  of 
Colonel  and  Mrs. 
Jonas  Clark,  and 
serve    to    recall    a 



Clark  Stones,  Chelmsford 


profession  ;  but  he  was  a  man  of  affairs,  and  be- 
came notable  in  that  direction.  He  kept  a  tavern 
in  what  is  now  known  as  Middlesex  Village,  Lowell. 
It  was  near  the  ferry,  and  a  resort  for  all  fashion- 
able people.  He  was  foremost  in  civil  and  military 
affairs,  and  withal  "a  good  Christian."  Around 
him  gathered  the  leaders  of  all  branches  of  society. 
The  coaches  of  Lowell's  most  wealthy  and  distin- 
guished citizens  of  to-day  are  inferior  to  those  with 
the  armorial  bearings  of  the  Colonial  times,  which 
rolled  up  to  that  hospitable  door  where  the  stately 
Colonel  received  his  relatives  and  guests,  among 
them  the  Hancocks  of  mercantile  and  clerical  life, 
and  scores  of  like  noted  families.  Of  no  less  im- 
portance were  the  Colonel's  associates  in  military 
affairs  who  also  congregated  at  this  house.  The 
most  timid  rustic  could  not  pass  the  tavern  with- 
out turning  to  catch  a  glimpse  of  the  spangle 
and  glitter  within  ;  while  the  more  brave  presented 
themselves  at  the  bar,  drank  from  the  common 
decanter,  backed  up  to  the  flaming  hearth,  and 
witnessed  such  displays  of  Colonial,  grandeur  as 
could  be  observed  from  their  standpoint.  The 
brilliancy  of  a  dinner-party  of  those  days  has  no 
parallel  for  the  eyes  of  this  generation. 

With  the  class  of  guests  who  sat  at  the  Colonel's 
board,  he  might  have  been  excused  if  he  had  kept 
silent  on  the  great  questions  that  exercised  the 
minds  of  the  Colonists  during  the  latter  part  of 
his  life;  but  he  was  bold  in  his  declaration  for  the 



rights  of  the  Colonies,  yet  did  not  Hve  to  see  the 
clash  of  arms.  Wrapped  in  his  scarlet  cloak,  he 
was  laid  to  rest  with  military  honors  in  the  spring 
of  1770;  and  it  was  truthfully  recorded,  "  He  was 
honored  in  his  day,  and  was  the  glory  of  his 

Clark  Tavern,  Lowell 

As  ancient  is  this  hostelry 
As  any  in  the  land  may  be. 
Built  in  the  old  Colonial  day, 
When  men  lived  in  a  grander  way 
With  ampler  hospitality. 


The  Parker  homestead  is  another  estate  with- 
in the  limits  of  Lowell  which  belonged  to  Old 
Chelmsford.  While  it  is  apparent  that  no  other 
family  has  been  in  possession  of  the  estate  since 


the  Indians  quit  their  claim  to  Wamesit,  it  is  im- 
possible to  decide  when  the  first  Parker  set  up  his 
home  on  the  present  attractive  site.  A  petition 
of  1653  for  a  grant  of  a  tract  six  miles  square, 
"  which  bordereth  upon  Merrimack  near  Pau- 
tucket,"  bears  the  names  of  twenty-nine  men,  four 
of  whom  are  Parkers.  The  first  recorded  birth, 
in  1653,  was  that  of  Joseph  Parker.  A  well- 
founded  tradition  says  that  the  wife  of  Abraham 
Parker  was  the  first  woman  who  "  baked  and 
brewed  in  Chelmsford."  The  first  town  clerk  of 
the  settlement  was  Jacob  Parker,  who,  we  believe, 
at  this  time  was  intending  to  become  a  permanent 
settler,  but  later  removed,  with  Sarah  his  wife, 
to  Maiden,  Some  of  their  children,  however,  re- 
mained, and  perhaps  took  up  the  work  at  this 
homestead  relinquished  by  the  parents.  Ben- 
jamin Parker,  born-  in  1663,  is  the  first  family 
proprietor  known  to  have  been  located  here  on 
Chelmsford  Neck.  He  married  Sarah  Howard, 
granddaughter  of  Major  Simon  Willard,  one  of  the 
founders  of  Concord.  They  were  succeeded  by 
a  son  Benjamin,  born  in  1699,  whose  son  Benja- 
min, born  in  1723,  continued  the  family  posses- 
sion. The  next  in  order  of  descent  is  Jeduthan, 
born  in  1763,  succeeded  by  Benjamin,  born  in 
1803,  whose  son  Henry  E.  is  the  present  owner. 
He  has  two  sons,  who  represent  the  eighth  gen- 
eration on  the  homestead. 

This  family,  prominent  and  thrifty  for  more  than 



two  hundred  and  forty  years,  has  not  failed  of 
a  representative  in  eaeh  generation  whose  filial  re- 
lations prompted  him  to  a  full  appreciation  of  the 
work  of  those  who  have  preceded  him.  There  is 
now  treasured  in  this  home  in  the  city  of  Lowell 
an  accumulation  of  papers,  among  which  are  re- 
minders of   several  changes  in  government  from 

Parker  Homestead,  Lowell 

the  days  of  the  Indians  to  that  of  the  present. 
Through  the  courtesy  of  Mr.  Henry  E.  Parker,  I 
am  able  to  invite  my  readers  to  share  in  the  con- 
sideration of  some  of  them. 

The  most  attractive  are  two  deeds  written  on 
skins  of  animals,  so  badly  dressed  as  to  be  a  poor 
apology  for  vellum.  A  hole  in  one  was  doubtless 
made  by  the  bullet  which  killed  the  animal.  The 
deeds  are  attached   to  rollers  of  primitive  make. 


They  bear  date  of  December  14,  1686,  and  convey 
five  hundred  acres  of  land  to  forty-six  white  pro- 
prietors of  Chelmsford.  The  land  was  a  part  of 
the  Indian  reservation  granted  for  the  benefit  of 
the  tribe  through  the  interposition  of  John  Eliot. 
There  were  five  hundred  acres  on  the  north  side 
of  the  river,  and  a  much  larger  quantity  on  the 
south  side.  The  chief  of  these  Indians  was  Pas- 
saconnaway,  who  died  in  1662,  and  was  succeeded 
by  his  son  Wannalancet,  who,  in  following  the  in- 
junction of  his  father,  was  peaceable  and  friendly 
with  the  white  people.  «  At  the  opening  of  King 
Philip's  war  he  withdrew  to  the  northward  rather 
than  join  in  the  general  attempt  to  exterminate 
the  English  settlers. 

As  the  natives  abandoned  the  VVamesit  grant, 
the  lands  were  gradually  occupied  by  individuals 
from  Chelmsford  and  elsewhere;  and  in  1686  they 
sold  the  unoccupied  tract  of  five  hundred  acres  to 
Jonathan  Tyng  and  Thomas  Henchman,  who  con- 
veyed it  to  the  early  proprietors.  Among  them 
was  Benjamin  Parker,  then  twenty-three  years  of 
age.  This  conveyance  was  in  the  ''second  year 
of  the  reign  of  our  sovereign  lord.  King  James 
the  Second."  It  was  before  the  union  of  the 
Plymouth  and  Bay  Colonies,  when  the  first  charter 
was  in  force,  and  Simon  Bradstreet  was  Colonial 

The  Wamesit  purchase  took  place  in  the  very 
month  of  the  arrival  of   Sir  Edmund  Andros,  who 



soon  began  to  question  the  titles  to  all  the  lands 
held  by  the  settlers,  and  especially  declared  that 
deeds  from  the  Indians  were  no  better  than 
"scratches  of  a  bear's  paw."  But  the  insurrec- 
tion begun  in  Boston  resulted  in  the  expulsion  of 
the  tyrant,  and  the  people  had  no  trouble  from 
that  source  as  to  the  possession  of  their  lands. 


Commission  to  Uenjamin  Parker,  Chelmsford 

The  next  of  these  papers  to  hold  our  attention 
is  a  commission  granted  by  Governor  Shirley  in 
1654  to  the  third  Benjamin  Parker  as  lieutenant 
in  the  first  foot  company  of  Chelmsford,  of  which 
Ebenezer  Parker  is  captain.  It  is  in  the  twenty- 
eighth  year  of  the  reign  of  his  Majesty,  King 
George  the  Second. 

This  paper,  bearing  the  autograph  of  ''W.  Shir- 


ley,"  reminds  us  that  Lieutenant  Benjamin  Parker 
was  active  during  that  expedition  under  Sir  Wil- 
liam Pepperell  which  resulted  in  despoiling  the 
thrifty  Acadians  of  their  homes  and  property,  and 
scattered  seven  thousand  of  the  exiles  throughout 
the  Provinces.  Twenty-three  of  tlie  Chelmsford 
men  were  en2-ao:ed  in  that  service.  A  o-ood  num- 
ber  of  the  victims  of  that  questionable  measure  of 
war  were  soon  found  at  the  doors  of  the  Chelms- 
ford farmers,  to  be  provided  with  the  necessaries 
of  life. 

Benjamin  Parker  continued  to  exercise  the  au-, 
thority  of  his  position  through  the  remainder  of 
the  term  of  William  Shirley,  and  also  through  the 
administration  of  Governors  Phips,  Pownal,  and 
Bernard,  and  died  soon  after  Thomas  Hutchinson 
became  governor.  His  death  in  May,  1771,  called 
together  a  notable  company,  who  were  treated 
with  all  the  courtesies   of   the  age. 

The  next  paper  to  enlist  our  attention  is  the 
bill  for  the  funeral  supplies.  Among  the  items 
purchased  of  Samson  Stoddard  are:  "seventeen 
pairs  of  men's  black  gloves  ;  twenty-two  pairs  of 
women's  gloves  ;  3  black  Handkerchiefs  ;  3  Veils  ; 
I  piece  of  Black  Ribband ;  i  Black  Fan  ;  3  yds.  of 
Hat-band  crape."  Another  paper  shows  that  nine 
pairs  of  the  men's  and  two  pairs  of  the  women's 
gloves  were  purple  ;  one  pair  was  white,  and 
others  were  black.  Other  items  were,  ''  Rum  & 


The  religious  service  at  this  funeral,  according 
to  Rev.  Mr.  Bridge's  journal,  was  confined  to  a 
prayer  by  him.  He  noted  that  at  the  funeral  of 
Mrs.  Parker,  a  few  years  before,  the  prayer  was 
offered  in  the  parson's  absence  by  the  **  squire," 
the  functionary  next  in  order  of  dignity  and  im- 
portance in  the  town.  We  can  see  in  fancy  the 
large  company  of  comrades  and  neighbors  gath- 
ered on  this  day  in  the  last  of  the  spring  month 
to  do  honor  to  the  memory  of  Lieutenant  Benja- 
min Parker.  ''  The  names  of  those  who  are  to 
receive  the  gloves  "  is  a  paper  which  aids  our 
imagination ;  and  we  see  the  long  procession  form 
in  the  yard,  some  with  black,  some  with  purple, 
gloves,  and  the  clergyman  with  white  ones.  They 
present  an  imposing  appearance  as  they  take  up 
the  body  of  their  neighbor,  and  bear  it  all  the 
long  way  to  Chelmsford  Centre.  There  were 
doubtless  those  who  compared  the  outlay  at  this 
funeral  with  that  of  other  similar  occasions  ;  for 
the  funeral  customs  had  reached  an  extreme  from 
which  there  soon  came  a  decided  reaction. 

The  mourning  customs  of  this  time  in  the  Bay 
Colony  were  such  as  the  early  settlers  had  brought 
from  Europe  to  New  England.  Black  was  the 
color  worn  in  the  mother  country  by  the  people' 
in  general,  but  kings  and  cardinals  appeared  in 

Rino-s  were  also  an  additional  bad<:re  of  mourn- 
ino-.       The   extremes   to   which    this    custom   was 


often  carried  gave  rise  to  legislation  in  1721,  and 
again  in  1741,  but  with  little  effect.  In  1743,  at 
the  death  of  Rev.  Mr.  Cooper,  the  amount  of 
eight  hundred  and  ninety-five  pounds  was  col- 
lected in  his  congregation  to  meet  the  expense 
of  the  funeral,  and  to  put  his  family,  consisting 
of  ten  persons,  and  Dr.  Colman  into  mourning. 
Among  the  items  are  twenty-nine  rings  for  the 
ministers,  and  twelve  dozen  pairs  of  gloves. 
Isaac  Royal  of  Medford  in  1743  advertised,  — 

"  A  handsome  mourning  coach  and  a  pair  of  good  horses 
to  let  to  any  funeral,  at  ten  shillings  old  tenor,  each  funeral." 

It  was  the  custom  to  hang  the  escutcheon  of 
the  deceased  head  of  a  family  from  a  window,  or 
over  the  entrance  to  the  house  from  which  a 
funeral  took  place.  The  last  instance  in  Boston 
was  that  of  the  funeral  of  Thomas  Hancock  in 
1764,  when  the  family  arms  appeared  over  the 
entrance  to  the  famous  house  on  Beacon  Hill. 
Scarfs  were  frequently  added  to  the  gifts  on  these 

The  great  and  most  decided  change  in  funeral 
customs  came  during  the  contention  with  the 
mother  country.  The  non-importation  act  had  its 
effect,  for  imported  garments  had  been  more  com- 
monly used.  In  order  to  render  the  act  more 
effective,  the  Grand  American  Continental  Con- 
gress assembled  at  Philadelphia  in  the  autumn  of 


1774  passed  resolutions.     The  eighth  article  was 
as  follows  :  — 

"  We  will;  in  our  several  stations  encourage  frugality, 
economy  and  industry  .  .  .  and  on  the  death  of  any  rela- 
tion, or  friend,  none  of  us,  or  any  of  our  families  will  go 
into  any  further  mourning  dress,  than  a  black  crape  or  rib- 
bon on  the  arm  or  hat,  for  gentlemen,  and  a  black  ribbon 
and  necklace  for  ladies,  and  we  will  discountenance  the  giv- 
ing of  gloves  and  scarfs  at  funerals." 

The  act  generally  adopted  by  a  vote  of  the 
towns,  coming  soon  after  the  funeral  of  Lieuten- 
ant Parker,  leads  to  the  conclusion  that  it  was 
among  the  last  occasions  of  the  kind  when  this 
custom  was  practised  to  an  extreme. 

Another  suggestive  paper  of  the  collection  re- 
calls the  time  of  peculiar  trial  in  the  Provinces, 
and  reads : — 

"  Permit  Benj^"  Parker  to  pass  the  Guards  from  Head 
Quarters,  May  23,  1775.     J.  Ward,  Secretary. 

The  Chelmsford  men  were  among  those  who 
had  left  all  in  response  to  the  Lexington  alarm, 
and  were  a  part  of  the  army  holding  the  soldiers 
of  the  king  pent  up  in  Boston.  Benjamin  Parker, 
either  as  soldier,  or  as  one  who  had  come  to  bring 
supplies,  was  given  this  pass,  which  served  its  pur- 
pose, and  was  added  to  the  collection  of  earlier 

An  old  wallet  comes  next  to  view,  and  its  con- 
tents remind  us  that  among  the  many  questions 



involved  in  our  Revolution  was  that  of  the  cur- 
rency. There  was  none  more  difficult  to  meet. 
Each  colony  had  its  paper  money,  current  within 
its  own  borders,  but  passing,  if  at  all,  at  a  depre- 
ciated rate  in  the  sister  colonies.  This  gave  rise 
to  peculiar  difficulties  soon  after  the  beginning  of 
open  hostility. 

The  men  who  had  come  from  beyond  the  limits 
of  the  Bay  Colony  had  with  them  paper  currency, 


5  ""^''^"r^^^SS^^^^'    5*'^5?^''52iL*'_Li*?-*^*^j  j 

Vx.'  '  "    '^  ■"'  1"'"'  ^'^^  '"A 

Parkkr  Garret  Treasures,  Lowell 

which  was  not  accepted  in  exchange  for  the  neces- 
saries of  life.  This  seemed  hard  in  the  extreme. 
They  had  left  their  peaceful  abodes  to  succor  their 
neighbors  in  distress,  and  when  trying  to  pay  their 
own  expenses,  found  their  money  questionable. 
Our  Provincial  Congress  made  an  early  effort  to 
remedy  the  difficulty  by  having  the  currency  of 
Rhode  Island  and  Connecticut  pass  in  Massachu- 
setts. They  soon  empowered  the  treasurer  to  bor- 
row one  hundred  thousand  pounds  lawful  money, 


secured  by  notes  of  the  Province  at  six  per  cent, 
and  made  payable  June  i,  1777.  They  also  de- 
sired the  other  colonies  to  give  currency  to  their 
securities.  In  June  the  Continental  Congress 
ordered  an  emission  of  notes  to  the  amount  of 
two  millions  of  dollars.  Similar  acts  repeatedly 
followed  as  the  war  advanced.  But  a  lurking  sen- 
timent of  Toryism  with  some  pretended  patriots, 
as  well  as  ordinary  caution  on  the  part  of  friends 
of  the  Provincial  cause,  usually  commendable,  had 
a  depressing  effect  upon  public  confidence  in 
paper  currency.  This  prompted  the  Legislature 
to  pass  an  act  branding  individuals  as  enemies  to 
the  country  who  declined  to  receive  it  for  any  pe- 
cuniary obligation.  They  all  knew  that  a  failure  of 
the  Provincial  cause  meant  ruin  to  them,  and  that 
success  might  bring  redemption  of  the  doubtful 
currency.  In  the  extremity  they  took  the  objec- 
tionable paper,  and  realized  but  little,  if  anything, 
upon  it.  That  which  remained  in  their  hands 
was  at  lensith  releo-ated  to  the  old  red  chest,  as  in 
the  Parker  family,  where  the  eighth  generation 
brought  it  forth  from  the  garret  hiding-place,  and 
patiently  listened  to  the  story  of  its  intended  pur- 
pose by  the  hearth-stone  of  early  days. 









Although  far  removed  from  the  seat  of  war,  the 
town  of  Chelmsford  was  not  exempt  from  the  con- 
tagion which  frequently  visited  the  camp  of  the 
army.  In  the  year  1776,  a  soldier  returning  from 
the  army  called  at  the  home  of  Dr.  Marshall  for 
refreshment,  as  was  the  necessity  of  many  weary 
men  when  making  their  journey  on  foot  with 
empty  purses.  The  physician  was  away  during 
the  call  of  the  soldier,  but  upon  his  return  detected 
evidence  of  the  contagion  in  the  atmosphere, 
which  filled  him  with  forebodings  of  evil.  The 
worst  was  realized.  The  entire  family  took  the 
smallpox,  and  Mrs.  Marshall  and  two  children  died 
from  the  loathsome  disease.  In  the  following 
year  Samuel  Lufkin  and  his  wife  and  Solomon 
Keyes  died  of  the  same  disease,  contracted  in  a 
similar  way. 



The  old  burying-ground  of  Chelmsford  reminds 
one  of  this  entailment  of  war.  On  one  stone  we 
read  of  Mrs.  Hannah  Fletcher,  wife  of  Lieutenant 
Benj.  Fletcher,  who,  with  four  children,  perished 
within  the  space  of  two  weeks  in  the  autumn  of 



Fletcher  Stone  in  Chelmsford 

While  in  the  full  enjoyment  of  our  wisely  insti- 
tuted government,  we  hardly  pause  to  think  that 
our  patriotic  ancestors  hesitated  in  its  formation, 
and  trembled  at  the  experiment,  even  after  they 
had  fought  to  be  free  from  the  control  of  the 
mother  country.     It  was  easier  to  find  the  faults 


in  the  existing  government  than  to  point  out  the 
reliable  remedy. 

Probably  no  period  of  our  national  history  has 
been  more  perilous  than  that  which  intervened  be- 
tween the  close  of  the  Revolutionary  war  and  the 
adoption  of  the  Constitution. 

The  Continental  Congress^  which  was  the  result 
of  an  emergency,  had  done  its  work.  The  Articles 
of  Confederation  which  followed  were  not  suffi- 
cient ;  and  it  became  apparent  that  a  constitution 
must  be  formed  by  which  the  rights  of  each  State 
would  be  protected,  and  also  the  interests  of  the 
whole  be  maintained.  Then  it  was  that  every 
patriot  so  situated  as  to  mould  public  opinion  set 
to  work  to  inform  himself  on  governmental  affairs. 
The  patriotic  ministers  were  looked  to  as  guides  ; 
and  it  can  be  said  to  the  honor  of  Rev.  Mr.  Bridge, 
that  he  made  use  of  all  light  at  his  command,  in 
order  to  be  a  wise  counsellor  to  his  people. 

He  records,  December  28,  1787,  "  Spent  part  of 
the  day,  as  I  have  done  several  days,  in  reading 
Adams'  book  on  government."  In  February,  1788, 
he  records,  "  Much  talk  about  Constitution  of  the 
government,  its  being  adopted  by  the  vote  of  the 
Convention  which  has  been  sitting  in  Boston  just 
4  weeks." 

We  can  but  fancy  the  relief  of  the  people,  when, 
on  March  4,  1789,  the  new  government  went  into 
operation,  and  on  the  30th  of  April  following, 
when  General  George  Washington,  on  the  balcony 


of  Federal  Hall,  New  York,  took  the  oath  of  office 
as  the  first  president  of  the  United  States. 

It  was  by  these  hearth-stones,  and  others  long 
since  demolished,  that  the  patriotic  women  of 
the  towns  kept  busy  during  the  years  of  the 
Revolution,  in  preparing  the  town's  complement 
of  blankets,  stockings,  etc.,  while  thinking  of  the 
husband,  father,  brother,  son,  or  lover  who  was 
away  in  service  of  his  country. 

On  January  4,  1776,  the  House  of  Representa- 
tives passed  an  order  that  four  thousand  blankets 
be  provided  by  the  selectmen  of  the  respective 
towns  in  the  Province,  and  be  paid  for  out  of 
the  Province  treasury.  Chelmsford's  portion  was 
twelve.  This  was  in  the  midst  of  that  winter 
when  the  army  was  in  camp  at  Cambridge,  Med- 
ford,  and  Dorchester  ;  and  soldiers  from  the  town 
were  so  near  home  that  friends  kept  posted  on 
their  condition,  and  were  continually  going  to 
camp  with  supplies.  We  can  imagine  with  what 
earnestness  the  patriotic  women  went  to  work 
with  their  wheels  and  looms  to  prepare  the  gar- 
ments ordered.  Threads  were  saturated  with  tears 
from  the  eyes  of  those  who  had  seen  their  loved 
ones  go^  forth  in  response  to  the  April  alarm,  and 
who  never  returned  after  the  battle  of  Bunker 
Hill,  but  languished  and  died  in  Boston  —  so  near 
and  yet  so  far  from  those  who  longed  to  smooth 
their  pillows  and  soothe  their  pains. 

We  can  see  in  fancy  the  patriotic  minister,  Rev. 


Mr.  Bridge,  going  from  liouse  to  house  in  his 
parish  with  his  reports  from  camp,  after  return- 
ing:  from  a  visit  to  absent  members  of  his  flock. 
We  can  catch  his  words  of  cheer  dropped  here 
and  there,  and  hear  him  in  prayer  commending 
them  individually  and  collectively  to  the  care  of 
Him  who  notes  the  sparrow's  fall. 

This  service  seemed  to  be  for  their  own  people  ; 
but  in  the  following  year,  when  the  seat  of  war 
was  removed  from  Massachusetts,  there  was  a  call 
for  five  thousand  blankets,  and  Chelmsford's  share 
was  nineteen.  There  was  no  slackness  on  the  part 
of  the  people,  although  they  knew  not  who  were  to 
be  protected  from  the  severity  of  winter  by  their 
productions.  It  mattered  not  as  long  as  they 
were  acting  in  the  patriot  cause.  Independence 
had  been  declared ;  and  having  pledged  their  sacred 
honor  to  maintain  it,  they  had  no  inclination  to 
halt,  although  the  calls  were  often  repeated. 

Only  a  few  of  the  implements  of  domestic 
manufacture  are  retained  in  the  old  town,  yet  I 
chanced  to  meet  with  one  which  bears  a  sugges- 
tive inscription.  It  is  a  reel  made  of  wood,  and 
on  it  is  read  :  — 

"  Miss  Foley  Carter  Her  Real 
March  ye  6th    1777 
Count  your  Threads  Right 
If  you  real  in  the  night." 

With  this  rude  implement  in  my  hand,  seated 
by  the  hearth-stone  where  nine  generations  have 

A    LOVING   FRIEND  32  1 

sat,  I  gazed  into  the  blazing  fire  on  the  hearth 
until  there  rose  up  before  me  the  graceful  figure 
of  Polly  Carter,  dressed  in  her  homespun  frock, 
with  a  plaid  kerchief  neatly  folded  over  her  bosom. 
She  is  turning  off  the  threads  on  the  great  wheel 
by  the  fire,  while  a  stalwart  young  man  from  a 
neighboring  farm  stands  by,  thoughtfully  carving 
with  his  jackknife  the  rude  letters  which,  to  his 
untutored  mind,  spell  out  the  name  of  her  in 
whom  he  has  a  tender  interest.     These  he  hopes 

Polly  Carter's  Reel 

will  serve  to  remind  Polly  of  him  when  he  is  far 
away  in  the  service  of  his  country. 

The  scene  changes  to  the  following  year,  1778, 
when  the  town  was  called  upon  for  forty-seven 
shirts  and  as  many  pairs  of  shoes  and  stockings. 
The  same  gentle  face  appears,  but  with  the  lines 
of  anxious  care  more  plainly  seen.  She  has  reeled 
off  her  day's  work  of  spinning,  and  is  casting  up 
the  stitches  for  a  stocking.  Her  eyes  rest  on  the 
simple  figures,  which  remind  her  of  an  evening 
less  than  a  twelvemonth  ago,  but  seems  like  years 


to  her  whose  thoughts  are  of  the  bare  and  bleed- 
ing feet  pacing  the  rough  and  frozen  ground  of 
Valley  Forge.  No  stitch  is  dropped  ;  and  with 
each  round  of  the  needles  there  is  breathed  a 
prayer  for  the  success  of  the  patriot  cause,  and  for 
the  safe  return  of  one  whom  she  loves. 

The  extremity  to  which  the  patriot  army  was 
reduced  at  times  is  evidenced  by  the  course  taken 
by  the  Chelmsford  people  to  procure  supplies  ^  for 
the  men  in  camp.  A  document  purporting  .to  be 
a  subscription  paper  was  found  in  the  collection  ■ 
of  Mr.  Henry  E.  Parker.     It  reads  as  follows  :  — 

"We,  the  Inhabitants  of  the  town  of  Chehnsford,  Taking 
into  consideration  the  Dificulties  and  Hardships  which  our 
Brethren  endured  and  undergo  that  are  in  the  service  of  the 
United  States  of  America  and  in  the  defence  of  the  United 
States  of  America  and  in  the  defence  of  the  Rights  &  Priv- 
ihges  of  the  people  of  said  States,  do  agree  to  provide  the 
articles  set  against  our  names." 

The  name  of  Captain  John  Ford  heads  the  list 
with  the  promise  of  "  i  pr.  shoes."  Others  follow 
with  promise  of  shoes,  stockings,  shirts,  jackets, 
and  other  articles  of  clothing. 

We  have  a  most  thrilling  description  of  the 
battle  of  Bunker  Hill,  together  with  earlier  and 
later  experiences,  in  the  letter  written  by  Peter 
Brown  to  his  mother. 

1  The  absence  of  a  date  renders  it  uncertain  as  to  time,  buf 
our  inference  is  that  the  suppHes  were  for  the  army  at  Valley  Forge 
during  the  winter  of    1777-8. 


Cambridge,  June  25,  1775. 
Dear  atid  Hon\i  Mothe?-,  —  After  my  duty  to  you,  I  would 
inform  you  of  my  present  state  and  employment,  being 
rather  scrupulous  whether  you  may  receive  these  lines,  shall 
give  but  a  short  sketch  of  affairs  which  if  otherwise  I  would. 
Before  these  long  threatened  difficulties  began  among  us,  I 
had  plan'd  out  to  go  to  Connecticut,  where  I  expected  to 
work  the  summer,  but  the  Allwise  in  His  providence  hath 
very  differently  planned  my  summer's  work,  which  I  hope  may 
turn  to  His  Glory  and  my  good.  I  suppose  1  need  not  ac- 
quaint you  of  the  manner  in  which  the  enemy  first  approached 
us  at  Concord.  It  is  more  than  probable  you  have  had  it  in 
print  long  since.  When  I  was  first  alarm'd  I  was  at  West- 
ford,  whither  I  went  to  take  leave  of  my  friends  and  settle 
some  affairs  that  I  had  in  hand.  Was  calPd  about  Day- 
light, or  a  little  after,  and  rode  as  post  that  afternoon  before  I 
could  get  to  Concord,  after  which  I  pursued  with  the  rest  and 
fought  that  day,  tarried  at  Cambridge  that  night  being  for- 
bid to  go  home.  Soon  after  this  there  was  an  army  estab- 
lished, all  business  being  stagnated,  and  a  great  deal  wholly 
broke  up.  I  did  not  know  what  I  could  do  better  than  to 
enlist  therefore  being  hearty  in  the  Cause.  I  did  it  directly 
(and  listed)  under  Captain  Oliver  Bates,  in  Collo.  Prescott's 
regiment  with  whom  I  tarried  awhile  till  he,  our  Captain,  was 
taken  sick  and  went  home,  when  Mr.  Joshua  Parker,  by 
succession,  took  his  place,  and  makes  his  ground  good,  in 
whose  company  I  remain  yet,  where  I  do  a  Clerk  or  Orderly 
Sergants  business,  which  requires  much  care,  but  the  Duty 
is  easier  and  the  pay  higher  than  a  private  soldiers.  Friday 
the  1 6th  of  June  we  were  ordered  on  parade  at  six  o'clock 
with  one  days  provisions  and  Blankets  ready  for  a  march 
somewhere,  but  we  knew  not  where,  but  we  readily  and 
cheerfully  obeyed  ;  the  whole  that  were  called  for  were  these 
three:  Collo.  Prescott's,  Fry's  and  Nickson's  Regiments; 
after  tarrying  on  parade  till  Nine  at  Night  we  march'd  down 
on  to  Charleston  Hill  against  Copts  hill  in  Boston,  where  we 


entrench^  and  made  a  Fort  ten  rod  long  and  eight  wide 
with  a  Breastwork  of  about  eight  more  ;  we  worked  there 
undiscovered  till  about  live  in  the  morning  when  we  saw  our 
danger  being  against  Ships  of  the  Line  and  all  Boston  forti-' 
fied  against  us.  The  danger  we  were  in  made  us  think  there 
was  treachery  and  that  we  were  brought  there  to  be  all  slain, 
and  I  must  and  will  say  that  there  was  treachery,  oversight 
or  presumption  in  the  Conduct  of  our  officers,  for  about  5  in 
the  morning  we  not  having  more  than  half  our  fort  done, 
they  began  to  fire  (I  suppose  as  soon  as  they  had  orders) 
pretty  briskly  for  a  few  minutes  then  ceasM,  but  soon  begun 
again,  and  fird  to  the  number  of  twenty  minutes  (they  kiird 
but  one  of  our  men')  then  ceasVl  to  fire  till  about  eleven 
o'clock  when  they  began  to  fire  as  brisk  as  ever,  which  causVl 
many  of  our  young  Country  people  to  desert,  apprehending 
the  danger  in  a  clearer  manner  than  others  who  were  more 
diligent  in  digging  &  fortifying  ourselves  against  them.  We 
began  to  be  almost  beat  out,  being  fatigued  by  our  Labour, 
having  no  sleep  the  night  before,  very  little  to  eat,  no  drink 
but  rum,  but  what  we  hazarded  our  lives  to  get.  We  grew 
faint,  thirsty,  hungry  and  weary.  The  enemy  fir'd  very  warm 
from  Boston,  and  from  on  board  their  ships  that  lay  in  Fer- 
ryway  and  from  a  ship  that  lay  in  the  river  against  us  to 
stop  our  re-enforcement  which  they  did  in  some  measure  ; 
one  cannon  cut  three  men  in  two  on  the  Neck.  Our  officers 
sent  time  after  time  for  Cannon  from  Cambridge  in  the 
morning  &  could  get  but  four,  the  Capfn  of  which  fir'd  a  few 
times  then  swung  his  Hat  three  times  round  to  the  enemy 
and  ceased  to  fire,  then  about  three  o'clock  there  was  a 
cessation  of  the  Cannons  roaring.  Soon  after  we  espied  as 
many  as  40  boats  or  barges  coming  over  full  of  troops  it  is 
supposed  there  were  about  3,000  of  them,  and  about  700  of  us 
left,  not  deserted,  besides  500  re-enforcements  that  could  not 
get  nigh  enough  to  us  to  do  us  any  good  till  they  saw  that 
we  must  all  be  cut  ofi",  or  some  of  them,  they  ventured  to  ad- 
1  Asa  Pollard  of  Billerica.     See  "  First  Blood  at  Bunker  Hill." 


vance.  When  our  officers  perceived  that  the  enemy  intended 
to  land,  they  ordered  the  Artillery  to  go  out  of  the  fort  and 
prevent  it  if  possible,  from  whence  the  Artillery  Capt'n  took 
his  pieces  and  returned  home  to  Cambridge  with  much  haste, 
for  which  he  is  now  confined,  and  it  is  expected  must  suffer 
death.  The  enemy  landed  fronted  before  us  and  formed 
themselves  in  an  oblong  square  in  order  to  surround,  which 
they  did  in  part.  After  they  were  well  form'd  they  advanced 
toward  us  in  order  to  swallow  us  up,  but  they  found  a  Choaky 
mouthful  of  us,  *tho  we  could  do  nothing  with  our  small  arms 
as  yet  for  distance  and  had  but  two  Cannon  and  no  Gunner, 
and  they  from  Boston  and  from  the  shipping  firing  and 
throwing  Bombs  Keeping  us  down  till  they  almost  sur- 
rounded us.  But  God  in  Mercy  to  us  fought  our  battle  and 
tho'  we  were  but  few  in  number  and  suffered  to  be  defeated 
by  our  enemy  yet  we  were  preserved  in  a  most  wonderful 
manner  far  beyond  our  expectation  and  to  our  admiration  for 
out  of  our  Regiment  there  were  but  yj  killed,  4  or  5  taken 
captive,  about  forty-seven  wounded  &  oh  may  I  never  forget 
God's  distinguishing  mercy  to  me  in  sparing  my  Life  when 
they  fell  on  my  right  hand  and  on  my  left,  and  close  by  me, 
they  were,  to  the  eye  of  reason,  no  more  exposed  than  my- 
self. When  the  arrows  of  death  flew  thick  round  me  I  was 
preserv'd  while  others  were  sufTer'd  to  fall  a  prey  to  our  Cruel 
enemies.  O  may  that  God  whose  mercy  was  so  far  extended 
in  my  preservation  grant  me  his  grace  to  devote  my  future 
Life  to  his  divine  service.  Nor  do  I  conclude  that  the  danger 
is  yet  over  unless  God  in  his  mercy  either  remove  our  enemy 
or  heal  the  breach  —  but  if  we  should  be  called  again  to 
action,  I  hope  to  have  courage  and  strength  to  act  my  part 
valiantly  in  defence  of  our  Liberties  &  Country  trusting  in 
him  who  hath  hitherto  kept  me  and  hath  covered  my  head 
in  the  day  of  battle,  and  altho'  we  have  lost  four  out  of  our 
Company  &  several  taken  captive  by  the  enemy  of  America, 
I  was  not  suffered  to  be  touch VI. 

I  was  in  the  fort  when  the  enemy  came  in,  jumped  over 


the  wall  and  ran  half  a  mile  when  balls  flew  like-  hailstones 
and  Cannon  roat'd  like  thunder,  but  tho'  I  escap'd  then  it 
may  be  my  turn  next.  After  asking  your  Prayers  must  con- 
clude wishing  you  the  best  of  blessings,  still  remain  your 
Dutiful  son 

Peter  Brown. 

P.  S.  I  wish  very  much  to  come  and  see  you,  "'tis  in 
vain  to  think  of  that  now.  I  desire  you  to  write  to  me,  direct 
to  Peter  Brown  Cambridge,  to  be  left  at  Colo.  Prescotfs 
Chambers  in  the  South  Colledge  ^  and  send  by  way  of  Prov- 
idence to  Roxbury,  from  whence  it  will  be  likely  to  come 
safe  ;  my  love  to  Polly,  Sally  &  Patty,  have  not  leisure  to 
write  to  them  in  particular,  and  Conveyance  very  uncertain, 
hope  they  will  excuse  me  this  time. 

To-day  at  Camliridge,  to-morrow  — 
To-morrow  the  Lord  only  Knows  where. 

P.   B.'^ 

A  bronze  tablet  recently  placed  on  the  westerly 
side  of  South  College  has  the  following  :  — 



Built  by   the  Province,  1720. 

occupied  by 

The  American  Army 


Used  for  Students'  Rooms  until 


1  Massachusetts  Ilall. 

2  The  above  letter  from  Peter  Brown  to  his  mother,  now  given 
for  the  first  time  in  enduring  form,  confirms  a  tradition  in  regard 
to  the  first  victim  of  the  British  guns  on  June  17,  1775. 



It  was  my  good  fortune  to  meet  at  her  home  in 
Lunenburg  Miss  Susan  Brown,  who  related  the 
following  facts  :  — 

*'  Peter  Brown  was  my  grandfather.  He  was 
born  in  Newport,  R.L,  in  1753.     He  was  a  son  of 

South  College  (Massachusetts  Hall) 

William  Brown,  and  a  descendant  of  Peter  Brown, 
who  came  in  the  Mayflower  in  1620,  and  settled 
in  Plymouth,  and  whose  son  Peter,  a  non-conform- 
ist, went  to  Rhode  Island  with  Roger  Williams. 
My  grandfather,  Peter,  removed  to  Massachusetts, 


and,  as  the  letter  shows,  was  living  at  or  near 
Concord  at  the  beginning  of  hostilities.  After 
his  service  in  the  Revolution  he  had  a  temporary 
residence  at  Boylston,  Mass.,  where  he  married 
Olive  Dinsmore,  October  24,  1781.  They  settled 
in  the  part  of  Lunenburg  known  as  Flat  Hill, 
at  a  beautiful  situation  now  occupied  by  their 

*•'  My  grandfather  was  an  influential  man.  He 
was  for  several  years  one  of  the  school  committee, 
a  selectman  and  coroner.  He  was  chosen  dea- 
con, but  declined  on  account  of  age,  and  distance 
from  the  meeting-house.  Peter's  son  William  was 
my  father.  He  lived  at  the  old  home,  and  there  I 
was  born.  My  grandfather  followed  the  trade  of 
a  blacksmith  in  connection  with  the  care  of  his 

Miss  Susan  Brown  was  quite  young  when  her 
patriot  grandfather  died  ;  but  she  has  vivid  recol- 
lections of  him  as  a  man  small  in  stature,  and 
busy  in  making  his  children  and  grandchildren 

''  I  am  the  only  living  grandchild  of  Peter  Brown 
who  bears  the  family  name,"  said  Miss  Brown,  as 
standing  at  her  door  in  Lunenburg  she  pointed 
out  the  old  homestead,  and  directed  her  guest  to 
the  delightful  locality  where  the  soldier  set  up  his 
home.  She  then  guided  me  to  the  burying-ground 
near  by,  where  is  read  on  a  slate  tablet,  chiselled 
out  by  William,  son  of  Peter,  the  following  :  — 




Who  Died  July  13*11,  1829, 

JE.  76  Years. 

He  was  a  soldier  in  the    Revolution ;  was  one  of  those  who   pursued 

the  British  in  their  retreat  from  Concord  to  Boston.     Was  in 

the  Battle  on   Bunkers   Hill.      He  was  an  honest 

man  and  a  devoted  Christian. 


I  learned  the  story  of  the  first  blood  at  Bunker 
Hill  from  the  lips  of  the  venerable  officer  of  the 
town  of  Billerica,  Mr.  Dudley  Foster,  while  sit- 
ting with  hini  by  his  family  hearth-stone. 

Mr.  Foster  said,  ''  I  am  a  descendant  from 
Thomas  Foster,  who  appeared  in  this  country  as 
early  as  1659.  My  grandfather  was  Joseph  Foster, 
the  clerk  of  the  town  of  Beverly  in  the  early 
days.  My  father,  Samuel  Foster,  came  to  Billerica 
and  settled  more  than  a  century  ago. 

"It  was  through  the  Pollard  family,  to  which 
my  wife  belonged,  that  we  have  the  kinship  with 
Asa  Pollard,  the  first  to  fall  at  Bunker  Hill." 

Asa  Pollard  was  the  fourth  son  of  John  Pollard 
and  Mary,  daughter  of  Isaac  Stearns,  born  No- 
vember 15,  1735,  at  a  farm  located  in  North  Bil- 
lerica. The  family  first  appeared  in  possession  of 
the  land  in  1692.  Its  members  were  inured  to 
hardship,  the  devastations  of  the  Indians  having 
set  their  teeth  on  edge  at  an  early  age.  Asa 
served  in  the  French  war,  was  a  scout,  and  well 


trained  in  military  tactics  when  the  Lexington 
alarm  called  him  from  the  old  home.  It  is  said 
that  the  musket  which  he  took  from  the  pegs 
above  the  family  hearth-stone  on  April  19,  1775, 
carried  to  Concord  and  to  Bunker  Hill,  was  one 
that  he  had  received  from  the  Provincial  Govern- 
ment as  a  bounty  for  a  certain  number  of  Indian 
scalps  brought  in  by  him  after  that  questionable 
means  was  adopted  for  exterminating  the  race. 
The  scarcity  of  fire-arms  at  the  opening  of  the 
Revolution  tends  to  support  the  family  tradition, 
while  the  recorded  votes  of  the  town  give  added 

Asa  Pollard  and  his  comrades  were  more  than 
glad  of  an  opportunity  to  shoot  at  Gage's  men  ; 
for  they  had  vividly  in  mind  the  coat  of  tar  and 
feathers  given  to  one  of  their  neighbors  while  in 
Boston  a  little  more  than  a  year  before  the  open- 
ing of  the  war.  (See  "Beneath  Old  Roof  Trees.") 
When  the  town  voted  "to  look  up  the  old  bay- 
onets," Asa  Pollard  looked  up  his,  and  all  that 
went  with  it,  and  used  it  like  a  trained  soldier. 
He  and  his  brother  Solomon  were  at  Concord  on 
April  19,  and  the  latter  was  in  command  of  the 
minute-men  of  Billerica  at  Bunker  Hill.  The  rec- 
ords fail  to  tell  us  when  the  company  went  to  join 
the  forces  under  General  Artemas  Ward  —  pos- 
sibly they  did  not  all  go  at  one  time.  Billerica  was 
in  the  line  of  march  of  many  of  the  up-country 
troops,  and  companies  were  seen  passing  along  the 


highway  at  various  times.  A  company  from  New 
Hampshire  reached  the  town  at  nightfall ;  and 
being  weary,  it  was  decided  to  camp  in  a  farm- 
yard until  the  following  morning.  This  was  done; 
and  the  combined  hospitality  and  patriotism  of 
the  farmer's  wife  were  manifested  in  a  substantial 
manner.  She  made  haste  to  prepare  for  them  a 
genuine  New  England  meal,  and  in  the  early 
morning  hot  beans  and  rye  bread  were  brought 
forth  from  the  great  brick  oven  to  the  delight  of 
the  soldiers.  The  wooden  shovel  on  which  the 
balls  of  spungy  dough  were  committed  to  the 
heated  bricks  by  the  hands  of  Mrs.  Sarah  Man- 
ning^ is  still  in  existence,  as  a  reminder  of  that  act 
of  a  patriot  of  the  town,  who  like  many  another 
did  valiant  service  beneath  her  own  roof. 

Asa  Pollard  was  of  the  number  of  men  who 
went  over  on  the  evening  of  the  i6th  of  June,  and 
labored  through  the  night  throwing  up  earth- 

Said  Mr.  Foster,  "  My  wife's  uncle,  Edward 
Pollard,  lived  in  her  father's  family  during  her 
girlhood ;  and  having  served  four  years  in  the 
Continental  army,  he  had  a  large  store  of  anec- 
dotes of  those  days,  with  which  he  used  to  enter- 
tain  the   young   people,   who   never  tired   of   the 

1  Sarah  Heywood  of  Burlington  married  William  Manning  of 
Billerica  in  1769.  She  died  in  1838,  aged  91  years.  Her  husband 
was  commissioned  Second  Lieutenant  in  Captain  Kidder's  com- 
pany, Seventh  Regiment,  May  31,  1776. 


veteran's  stories,  among  which  was  that  of  Asa's 
death.  It  was  about  noon,  and  they  were  taking 
their  lunch  brought  over  from  camp  on  the  previ- 
ous evening.  An  occasional  cannon-ball  had  been 
fired  over  from  the  war-vessels  of  the  enemy  dur- 
ing the  morning  hours,  but  they  had  been  easily 
dodged  by  the  busy  workmen.  Asa  Pollard  had 
seen  such  missiles  before,  and  made  light  of  the 
poorly  directed  shot.  But  about  midday  this  brave 
son  of  Billerica,  when  seated  on  the  embankment, 
was  struck  by  a  cannon-ball,  which  severed  his 
head  from  his  body.  The  bloody  scene  was  within 
the  presence  of  Colonel  Prescott,  who  was  passing 
down  the  line  at  the  very  moment  of  the  fatal 
shot.  Then  came  the  first  confusion  of  the  day. 
Men  left  their  places  in  spite  of  all  orders.  They 
were  drawn  to  the  spot  by  the  dreadful  fate  of 
their  comrade.  Putnam  came  running  up  from 
the  rail  fence,  and  with  most  positive  words  at- 
tempted to  force  them  back  into  line.  Prescott 
ordered  the  body  buried  immediately,  saying, 
'  He's  the  first  to  fall,  and  the  only  one  who  will 
be  buried  to-day.'  One  of  the  officers  is  said  to 
have  expressed  surprise  that  the  soldier  should 
be  buried  without  a  funeral  service ;  but  the  gal- 
lant Prescott  saw  that  the  presence  of  death  in 
that  form  was  not  conducive  to  order,  and  consid- 
ered that  there  was  no  other  way  to  maintain  dis- 
cipline. The  enemy  on  the  vessels  had  seen  the 
confusion  resulting  from  that  one  successful  shot, 





and  redoubled  their  fire.  The  shot  which  struck 
Pollard  came  from  the  Somerset,  the  frigate  which 
afterwards  went  ashore  near  Lieutenant's  Island, 
off  the  Massachusetts  coast  ;  and  it  is  claimed  that 
a  portion  of  her  hull  is  yet  embedded  in  the  sand 
of  that  place." 

The  body  of  Asa  Pollard  rests  with  the  others  in 
the  soil  which  drank  up  their  youthful  blood.  It 
was  nearly  acentury 
before  the  people 
of  his  native  town 
took  any  steps  to 
perpetuate  his  mem- 
ory; but  on  the  cen- 
tennial of  his  death, 
a  tree  was  planted 
on  the  public  Com- 
mon, where  it  now 
flourishes  to  keep 
the  young  hero's 
memory  green. 
Later,  the  Union 
School  buildingwas 
dedicated  as  the  Asa  Pollard  School,  and  now  the 
local  society  of  the  Children  of  the  American  Revo- 
lution is  known  as  the  Asa  Pollard  Society.  The 
birthplace  of  the  hero  has  also  been  suitably  marked 
by  the  Billerica  Historical  Society  and  the  Foster 
brothers,  sons  of  Dudley  Foster  and  Louise  Pollard. 

Dudley  Foster. 




The  dew  of  only  one  night  had  moistened  the 
little  grave  in  Granary  Burying-Ground  where 
Robert  and  Mary  Rand  had  laid  their  first-born 
to  rest,  when  the  sorrowful  couple  were  aroused 
by  the  message,  "  The  Regulars  have  marched 
out  into  the  country  to  destroy  the  stores  as  it  is 

For  nearly  eleven  months  the  people  of  Boston 
had  suffered  the  hardships  of  the  blockade.  To 
be  sure,  the  sympathetic  patriots  throughout  the 
continent  had  ministered  to  them.  South  Carolina 
had  sent  two  hundred  barrels  of  rice,  and  prom- 
ised eight  hundred  more.  Wilmington,  N.C.,  had 
sent  two  thousand  pounds  currency.  Connecticut 
had  sent  over  her  flocks  of  sheep.  All  New  Eng- 
land towns  had  shared  their  crops  with  their 
neighbors  in  Boston.  Maryland  and  Virginia  had 
contributed  liberally.  George  Washington  had 
headed  a  subscription  paper  with  his  personal  gift 
of  fifty  pounds.  The  settlers  beyond  the  Blue 
Ridge  had  contributed   from   their  scant  supply, 


and  sent  it  over  the  mountains  to  the  distressed 
and  sufferinir  in  Boston.  And  with  these  re- 
peated  donations  had  come  words  of  sympathy 
and  cheer.  The  ministers  of  Connecticut  had 
written,  "  The  taking  away  of  civil  liberty  will 
involve  the  ruin  of  religious  liberty  also."  The 
people  of  Brooklyn,  Conn.,  the  home  of  General 
Israel  Putnam,  had  written,  ''  Your  zeal  in  favor 
of  liberty  has  gained  a  name  that  shall  perish  but 
with  the  glorious  constellation  of  Heaven."  Yet 
notwithstanding  all  this  aid,  there  was  suffering 
and'  untold  anxiety  in  the  blockaded  town.  It 
was  not  confined  to  the  poor  by  any  means. 
*'  The  warehouses  of  the  thrifty  merchants  were 
at  once  made  valueless  ;  the  costly  wharfs,  which 
extended  far  into  the  channel,  and  were  so  lately 
covered  with  produce  of  the  tropics  and  with  Eng- 
lish fabrics,  were  become  solitary  places  ;  the  har- 
bor, which  had  resounded  incessantly  with  cheery 
voices  of  prosperous  commerce,  was  now  disturbed 
by  no  sounds  but  from  British  vessels  of  war." 
No  one  could  go  in  and  out  his  own  door  with- 
out being  scrutinized  by  the  British  guards  that 
patrolled  the  streets  of  the  town.  Even  the  sor- 
rowful group  that  had  made  its  way  on  the  17th 
of  April  to  the  burying-ground  had  been  under 
the  watch  of  the  soldiers  of  the  king.  The  grief 
of  the  Rand  family  naturally  led  them  to  be  more 
sympathetic  for  the  wounded  and  dying  who  were 
brought  in  to  Boston  in  the  night  of  April   19; 


but  they  were  avowed  patriots,  and  consequently 
not  in  harmony  with  the  officials  whose  move- 
ments had  occasioned  the  distress,  and  they  could 
do  but  little  for  the  sufferers. 

The  Rands  were  "  well  connected  and  well  to 
do,"  but  in  this  exigency  were  poor  even  in  their 
wealth.  Robert  Rand,  the  head  of  the  Boston 
family,  was  born  in  17 19.  He  was  a  descendant 
from  Robert  Rand  of  Lynn,  who  in  1692,  by  a 
vote  in  town  meeting,  was  granted  the  right  to 
sit  with  six  other  aged  men  in  the  pulpit.  Mary, 
his  wife,  was  daughter  of  William  Simpkins,  a 
jeweller  and  silversmith  of  considerable  distinc- 
tion. They  were  married  on  June  3,  1773,  and 
had  but  just  completed  a  year  in  a  home  of  their 
own  when  the  port  of  Boston  was  closed.  Be- 
lieving that  an  Englishman's  home  is  his  castle, 
the  Rand  family  maintained  their  position  until 
the  infections  that  followed  the  army  made  it 
dangerous  to  health  and  life,  when  it  was  decided 
that  Mrs.  Rand  should  leave  the  town.  A  good 
many  had  gone  to  Chelmsford,  and  availed  them- 
selves of  the  hospitality  bountifully  extended  to 
all ;  and  a  home  was  found  there  for  Mrs.  Rand 
through  the  influence  of  her  physician,  Dr.  Dan- 
forth.  The  change  was  made  by  his  advice,  and 
he  naturally  took  steps  to  a  her  in  leaving  the 
town.  The  restrictions  in  regard  to  the  amount 
of  goods  taken  away  were  very  annoying  to  this 
family,  for  they  had  an  abundance ;  but  Mrs.  Rand 


in  disguise  presented  herself  for  a  permit.  She 
had  a  suspicious  trunk,  which  she  refused  to  allow 
out  of  her  sight,  and  this  led  the  sentinel  to  op- 
pose her  going;  but  Dr.  Danforth's  son  Tom,  a 
family  friend,  yet  a  Tory,  interfered  with  seeming 
roughness  of  manner,  and  said,  "  Let  the  old 
woman  go;"  and  she  was  allowed  to  leave  the 
town.  The  contents  of  the  trunk  was  chiefly 
gold  coin,  which  was  used  by  her  for  her  own 
comfort,  and  in  dispensing  to  the  comfort  of 
others  who  had  fled  from  the  blockaded  town 
under  less  favoring  circumstances.  There  was  one 
memento,  however,  which  the  sorrowing  mother 
could  not  leave  behind  in  the  deserted  home.  It 
was  more  precious  to  her  than  the  coin  which  it 
accompanied  ;  for  it  so  vividly  reminded  her  of  the 
little  one  who  had  borne  her  name  for  a  few  short 
months  and  passed  away,  and  whose  silent  rest- 
ing-place was  now  at  the  mercy  of  the  enemy. 
This  memento  was  only  a  pincushion,  on  which 
the  mother  read,  "  Welcome,  little  stranger,  to 
Boston,  though  the  port  is  blocked  up,  1774." 

Chelmsford  was  truly  a  patriotic  town,  and  her 
people  were  continually  sending  supplies,  as  were 
those  of  other  towns,  to  the  sufferers  who  were 
obliged  to  remain  in  Boston  ;  while  those  who 
made  their  temporary  home  in  Chelmsford  were 
as  comfortable  as  kind,  sympathetic  patriots  could 
make  them.  The  slightest  report  of  movements 
in  Boston  was  eagerly  scanned,  and  the  news  of 



the  evacuation  brought  cheer  to  them  all.  The 
Rand  family  hoped  to  be  soon  re-established  in 
their  own  home,  but  the  army  had  left  an  entail- 
ment of  disease  which  required  the  most  vigilant 

Rand  Pincushion 

attention  and  severe  restrictions  in  order  to  eradi- 
cate it.  In  July,  1776,  the  selectmen  passed  an 
order  that  people  going  out  of  town  must  carry  a 
certificate  from  the  medical  authorities  proving 
that  they  had  been  "■  smoked  and  cleansed,"  and 


were  free  from  all  possibility  of  infection.  The  re- 
peated outbreak  of  the  smallpox,  and  general  dis- 
arrangement of  affairs,  prevented  individuals  from 
returning  for  many  months.  Among  them  was 
Mrs.  Rand.  The  year  1777  had  come  before  this 
lady  again  welcomed  her  friends  around  the  family 
hearth-stone  in  Boston.  But  the  cradle  left  tenant- 
less  was  again  occupied  ;  and  there  was  recorded 
in  Chelmsford,  ''Born  December  14,  1776,  Mary, 
daughter  to  Robert  and  Mary  Rand  of  Boston." 

Boston  seemed  to  the  returning  family  a  very 
different  place  from  that  which  they  had  left. 
Many  of  their  neighbors  who  adhered  to  the  king 
had  fled  with  the  army  and  could  not  return, 
while  those  who  espoused  the  patriots'  cause,  and 
remained  in  the  country,  found  it  the  work  of 
months  and  years  to  restore  their  homes  and  pub- 
lic buildings  to  as  good  condition  as  they  were 
in  when  the  army  of  the  king  took  possession  of 
the  town  ;  and  the  old  burying-grounds  bear  silent 
testimony  to  the  devastations  of  the  army  of  the 

Four  children  grew  up  together  in  the  home  of 
Robert  Rand,  but  only  three  of  them  could  claim 
Boston  as  their  birthplace.  They  were  prominent 
among  the  families  of  the  enterprising  merchants, 
and  popular  in  the  best  society  of  the  town. 

But  a  few  months  after  the  little  stranger  was 
welcomed  to  the  Rand  family  at  Chelmsford,  there 
was  a  son  born  in  the  Fitch  tavern   at  Bedford  ; 


and  he  was  called  Jeremiah,  after  his  father  and 
grandfather.  The  war  for  independence  was  still 
being  carried  on,  and  much  of  local  military  in- 
terest centred  in  this  Jeremiah  Fitch  tavern.  It 
was  very  natural  that  the  namesake  of  the  father 
should  be  early  impressed  with  the  story  of  the 
morning  of  April  19,  1775,  and  of  his  father's  ex- 
perience as  sergeant  of  Bedford  minute-men  at 
Concord,  and  in  the  running  fight  of  that  day. 
These  early  impressions  were  never  forgotten,  but 
were  often  the  subject  of  conversation  by  the  old 
hearth-stone  and  in  the  busy  world. 

The  family  plan  had  been  that  Jeremiah  should 
be  trained  to  agricultural  pursuits,  and  succeed 
his  father  on  the  farm,  which  was  carried  on  in 
connection  with  the  business  of  a  country  tavern. 
But  the  boy  had  no  inclination  in  that  direction, 
and  at  the  age  of  fourteen  years  left  home,  and 
went  to  Charlestown  with  a  capital  of  twenty 
cents,  and  unaided  by  any  one  set  to  work  to  pro- 
cure employment.  He  soon  secured  a  situation 
with  Mr.  Samuel  Ruggles,  and  from  that  time  re- 
lieved his  parents  from  all  pecuniary  assistance. 
While  in  Charlestown  the  young  man  had  con- 
stantly before  his  eyes  the  redoubt  on  Bunker 
Hill,  and  the  hastily  made  graves  of  those  who 
were  companions  in  arms  with  his  father  when 
the  Lexington  alarm  called  them  from  their  homes. 

The  success  of  the  country  boy,  Jeremiah  Fitch, 
while  in  Charlestown,  made  a  way  for  him  to  cross 


over  to  Boston,  where  he  soon  set  up  business  for 
himself,  but  by  the  failure  of  his  patrons  he  was 
involved  in  embarrassments  ;  yet  with  the  deter- 
mination befitting  a  son  of  a  hero  of  April  19,  '75, 
young  Jeremiah  struggled  on  until  he  had  fully 
extricated  himself. 

He  was  always  esteemed  for  straightforward- 
ness and  integrity  in  his  dealings  ;  for  nearly  a 
score  of  years  he  was  a  director  of  the  Union 
Bank  and  for  the  Mercantile  Marine  Insurance 
Company.  For  many  years  he  was  a  member  of 
the  Board  of  Health,  retiring  in  1821  to  become 
a  member  of  the  last  Board  of  Selectmen  of  the 
town  of  Boston  ;  in  1824  he  was  a  member  of  the 
Common  Council,  and  in  the  following  year  an 
Overseer  of  the  Poor  of  the  City  of  Boston. 

It  was  his  conduct  in  adversity  that  won  for 
him  friends  who  offered  capital  and  other  assist- 
ance, with  which  he  made  his  way  to  fortune. 
But  he  never  forgot  his  early  associations.  The 
old  tavern  where  his  father  served  the  minute- 
men  on  the  morning  of  April  19,  1775,  was  sacred 
to  him ;  and  he  cherished  the  hearthstone  by 
which  he  had  been  cradled  during  the  war.  His 
delight  was  in  ministering  to  the  comforts  of  his 
parents  and  friends  of  his  youth. 

As  a  successful,  enterprising  merchant  of  Corn- 
hill,  he  met  the  beautiful  young  lady,  Mary  Rand  ; 
and  on  May  10,  1804,  they  were  married  in  Boston 
by   Rev.  William   Emerson,  who,  having  left  his 


Harvard  parish,  had  already  made  a  decided  im- 
pression as  a  dignified  pastor  of  the  First  Church 
of  Boston. 

The  united  efforts  of  the  young  couple  were  re- 
warded with  marked  success  ;  public  honors  were 
justly  conferred  upon  the  merchant  by  his  asso- 
ciates and  fellow-townsmen.  He  occupied  many 
positions  of  trust  within  the  gift  of  the  voters  of 
Boston  ;  and  as  a  mark  of  respect  for  the  son  of 
Old  Bedford,  the  name  of  Pond  Lane  was  changed 
to  Bedford  Street,  which  it  now  bears. 

While  in  the  midst  of  his  flourishing  business 
as  an  importer  of  dry  goods,  the  second  war  with 
England  came  on.  This  brought  vividly  to  mind 
the  trying  experiences  of  the  Fitch  and  Rand  fam- 
ilies during  the  Revolution. 

Having  kept  in  family  possession  the  old  home 
at  Bedford,  Jeremiah  Fitch  had  a  safe  retreat 
there  ;  and  he  recorded  under  date  of  September, 
1814,  "My  family  removed  to  Bedford  in  conse- 
quence of  the  war,  moved  my  goods  from  the 
store  the  same  day.  Returned  September  29, 
after  about  three  weeks."  Jeremiah  Fitch  re- 
peatedly manifested  his  loyalty  to  his  native  town. 
His  sentiments  rebelled  against  the  common  use 
of  the  cannon-ball  which,  fired  from  the  patriot 
camp  of  Cambridge,  struck  the  Brattle-street 
Church  during  the  siege  of  Boston.  Mr.  and  Mrs. 
Fitch  were  attendants  at  this  church  ;  and  being  a 
member  of  the  standing  committee,  he  succeeded 


in  having  the  ball,  that  had  done  duty  for  many 
years  as  a  weight  at  the  front  gate  of  a  neighbor's 
residence,  returned,  and  embedded  in  the  front  wall 
of  the  edifice,  where  it  was  kept  so  long  as  a  re- 
minder of  the  months  when  Gage's  army  was 
hemmed  in  by  the  Provincials. 

The  record  of  this  worthy  couple  is  with  that 
of  the  truly  successful  of  the  world.     The  name 

Slippers  of  Mary  Rand 

Mary  Rand  has  been  faithfully  continued  through 
successive  generations  ;  and  among  the  family 
treasures  are  a  silver  tankard  made  by  William 
Simpkins  the  silversmith  for  his  daughter  Mary 
when  she  married  Robert  Rand  ;  the  pincushion 
which  marked  the  advent  of  the  first  Mary  to  the 
Rand  family  during  the  siege  ;  the  slippers  and  a 
sample  of  the  dress  worn  by  Mary  Rand  when  she 
married  Jeremiah  Fitch  ;  five  generations  of  sam- 
plers, and  other  tangible  reminders  of  two  families 
worthy  to  be  perpetuated  in  the  annals  of  Boston 
and  Bedford. 










'Tis  still  observed  those  men  most  valiant  are 
That  are  most  modest  ere  they  come  to  war. 


The  act  of  incorj^oration  by  which  early  settle- 
ments in  New  England  were  granted  the  legal 
authority  of  towns  was  conditioned  upon  the  set- 
tlement of  an  orthodox  minister  of  good  conver- 
sation, and  a  provision  for  his  support.  His  was 
the  leading  position  in  the  town,  and  the  influence 
which  he  exerted  was  correspondingly  great.  His 
judgment  was  seldom  questioned,  his  authority 
never  doubted. 

When  the  English  and  French  were  contend- 
ing for  possession  in  North  America,  the  minis- 
ter went  forth,  with  his  soldier  parishioners,  and 


served  as  their  chaplain.  His  voice  was  heard 
from  the  pulpit  and  from  house  to  house  in  the 
interest  of  freedom  during  the  years  of  the  Rev- 
olution. In  the  siege  of  Boston  he  divided  his 
time  between  his  parish  at  home  and  his  parish 
in  camp.  When  the  seat  of  war  was  removed 
from  Massachusetts,  the  faithful  minister  did  not 
hesitate  to  take  up  his  cross  and  appear  in  the 
midst  of  the  army,  though  far  from  his  home.  In 
many  instances  this  trusted  friend  shouldered  a 
musket  and  carried  his  Bible  also. 

As  types  of  the  patriotic  ministers  during  the 
early  and  later  wars  may  be  cited  the  four  Emer- 
sons.  So  large  was  their  place  in  the  affections 
of  their  people,  and  so  broad  was  their  influence, 
that  they  were  styled  "patriot  preachers."  They 
were  Reverends  Joseph,  William,  John,  and  Dan- 
iel Emerson,  —  settled  ministers  of  the  Congre- 
gational order  in  four  prominent  towns  of  New 
England  when  the  Revolution  burst  upon  the 
Colonies.  Their  respective  parishes  were  Pepper- 
ell,  Concord,  and  Conway  in  Massachusetts,  and 
Hollis  in  New  Hampshire.  They  had  been  labor- 
ing for  the  upbuilding  of  these  towns  for  some 
years  before  the  Revolution,  and  been  faithful 
servants  of  the  Crown.  They  had  often  read 
from  their  pulpits  official  proclamations  for  pub- 
lic fasts  and  thanksgivings,  and  sincerely  offered 
up  the  prayer,  ''God  save  the  king."  But  when 
Britain's  sovereign  proved  unfaithful  to  his  sub- 


jects,  these  Emersons  espoused  the  cause  of  the 
oppressed.     The  alarm  on  that  April  morning,  — 

"Through  every  Middlesex  village  and  farm," 

met  with  a  ready  response  on  the  part  of  each 
of  these  ministers  ;  and  before  the  evacuation  of 
Boston  one  of  them  had  passed  from  earth,  and  a 
second  joined  him  before  the  close  of  the  year 

These  men  were  not  only  closely  allied  in  pro- 
fession, but  were  united  by  the  endearing  ties  of  kin- 
ship. Reverends  Joseph,  William,  and  John  were 
brothers,  and  their  sister  Hannah  was  the  wife  of 
Rev.  Daniel  Emerson.  Thus  four  of  the  children 
of  that  noted  minister  of  Maiden,  Rev.  Joseph 
Emerson,  were  in  full  sympathy  in  their  work  at 
this  trying  period  of  the  history  of  our  country. 

Amone:  the  ancestors  of  the  Emersons  in  this 
country  must  be  cited  Rev.  Peter  Bulkley,  a  pio- 


neer,  and  the  first  minister  of  Concord  ;  Rev. 
Joseph  Emerson,  a  pioneer  and  minister  of  Men- 
don,  who  barely  escaped  with  his  life  when  the 
village  was  destroyed  by  the  Indians  ;  Rev.  Sam- 
uel Moody,  a  pioneer  and  minister  of  York,  Maine  ; 
and  Deacon  Cornelius  Waldo,  one  of  the  Wenham 
Colony,  who  emigrated  in  1655,  and  became  one 
of  the  founders  of  the  town  of  Chelmsford  in  the 
Bay  Colony. 

Rev.  Peter  Bulkley  was  a  man  of  considerable 
property  in  Odell,  Bedfordshire,  England.  He 
was  among  those  who,  being  silenced  by  Arch- 
bishop Laud  for  nonconformity,  crossed  the  At- 
lantic in  1634  to  New  England,  and  became  one 
of  the  little  company  who  pushed  out  through  the 
tangled  wood,  and  founded  the  town  of  Concord, 
and  there  spent  most  of  his  fortune  as  a  pioneer 
of  civilization.  *'  He  was  addressed  as  father, 
prophet,  and  counsellor  by  his  people,  and  by  all 
the  ministers  of  the  country."  —  Shattuck. 

Rev.  Joseph  Emerson  was  settled  in  Mendon, 
December,  1669.  His  salary  was  forty-five  pounds 
for  the  first  two  years,  to  be  paid  as  follows  :  — 

"  Tenn  pounds  at  Boston  yearly  at  some  shope  there,  or 
in  money  at  this  town.  The  remayning  to  be  made  up,  two 
pounds  of  butter  for  every  cow,  the  rest  in  pork,  wheat, 
barley,  and  soe  to  make  the  year's  pay  in  work,  Indian  corn, 
rye,  pease,  and  beef.  After  the  second  year  he  was  to  be 
paid  fifty-five  pounds  yearly,  and  soe  on  as  God  shall  enable 
them.     All   differences   between  the  minister  and  the  town 


were  to  be  referred  for  adjudication,  to  the  churches  of  Med- 
field,  Dedham,  and  Roxbury." 

This  ministry  was  cut  short  by  King  Philip's 
war,  in  1675,  when  Rev.  Mr.  Emerson  fled  to  the 
home  of  his  father-in-law,  Rev.  Edward  Biilkley,i 
at  Concord,  and  there  died  in  1680. 

Rev.  Samuel  Moody,  or  Father  Moody,  of  Aga- 
menticus,  was  the  valiant  minister  of  York,  Maine. 
He  did  not  hesitate  to  exercise  his  full  authority. 
"  When  the  offended  parishioners,  wounded  by 
his  pointed  preaching,  vi^ould  rise  to  go  out  of 
church,  he  cried  out,  '  Come  back,  you  graceless 
sinners,  come  back!'  And  when  they  began  to 
fall  into  ill  customs,  and  ventured  into  the  ale- 
houses on  a  Saturday  night,  he  would  go  in  after 
them,  collar  the  sinners,  drag  them  out  with  rous- 
ing admonition.  His  charity  was  without  stint. 
He  gave  away  his  wife's  only  pair  of  shoes  from 
her  bedside  to  a  poor  woman  who  came  to  the 
house  one  frosty  morning  barefoot.  When  his 
wife,  trying  to  restrain  his  unreasonable  generos- 
ity, made  him  a  purse  that  was  opened  with  dififi- 
culty,  he  gave  away  purse  and  all." 

Deacon  Cornelius  Waldo  of  a  family  of  London 
merchants  was  born  in  1625.  He  came  early  to 
this  country,  and  settled  in  Essex  County,  and 
later  went  with  Rev.  John  Fisk  and  others  to  the 

^  Edward  Bulkley  left  his  parish  at  Marshfield  to  succeed  his 
father  at  Concord,  where  he  labored  until  his  death  in  1696. 


town  of  Chelmsford,  where  he  completed  his  use- 
ful life.  A  simple  stone  in  the  burying-ground 
tells  the  following  :  — 

HERE    LYES    YE    BODY    OF 

Aged  75  Years.     Died  Jan.  Ye  3,  1700. 

"  The  Memory  of  the  Just  is  Blessed.'''' 

The  line  of  connection  is  as  follows  :  — 
Rev.  Joseph  Emerson  of  Mendon  married  Eliza- 
beth, daughter  of  Rev.  Edward,  and  granddaughter 
of  Rev.  Peter  Bulkley  of  Concord.  Edward,  son 
of  Rev.  Joseph  Emerson  and  Elizabeth  Bulkley, 
married  Rebecca,  daughter  of  Cornelius  Waldo. 
Their  son.  Rev.  Joseph  Emerson  of  Maiden,  mar- 
ried Mary,  daughter  of  Rev.  Samuel  Moody.  Jo- 
seph, William,  John,  and  Hannah  were  the  children 
of  Rev.  Joseph  and  Mary  Moody  Emerson. 

While  Edward  Emerson  of  Chelmsford  was  not 
a  minister,  he  was  early  found  to  be  a  leader  in 
educational  matters.  He  was  the  town's  school- 
master in  1698,  and  in  1703  was  a  member  of  a 
board  of  school  committee.  On  his  grave-stone 
he  is  thus  recorded,  — 


Some  time  Deacon  of  the  First  Church 

IN  Medway. 

He  was  noted  for  the  virtue  of  patience,  and  it  is  a  family 
tradition  that  he  never  complained  but  once,  when  he  said 
mildly  to  his  daughter,  that  her  dumplings  were  somewhat 
harder  than  needful,  but  not  often.  — O.  W.  Holmes. 



Our  four  patriot  preachers  were  graduates  of 
Harvard  College.  They  were  young  and  unmar- 
ried when  they  entered  their  pastoral  work.  Rev. 
Daniel  Emerson   was  from   Reading.      We   shall 

Joseph  Emerson's  Chair,  Pepperell 

consider  him  here  for  another  reason  than  that 
of  marriage. 

Elizabeth  Bulkley,  widow  of  Rev.  Joseph  Emer- 
son who  died  at  Concord  in  1680,  married,  in 
1682,  John  Brown,  Esq.,  of  Reading.  This  union 
brought    the    Emerson    and    Brown    children    of 


former  marriages  together,  and  resulted  in  the 
marriage  of  Peter  Emerson  and  Anna  Brown, 
who  became  the  parents  of  Daniel  Emerson.  He 
was  born  in  1716,  and  graduated  at  Harvard  Col- 
lege in  1739.  He  was  settled  as  the  first  minis- 
ter of  Hollis,  N.H.,  in  1743,  and  in  the  autumn 
of  the  following  year  brought  his  bride,  Hannah 
Emerson,  from  the  Maiden  parsonage  to  his  home 
in  the  comparative  wilderness. 

The  settlement  of  Rev.  Daniel  Emerson  in  a 
home  of  his  own  with  a  guaranty  of  support  ful- 
filled the  conditions  of  incorporation,  and  the 
town  of  Hollis  began  a  prosperous   record. 

While  busy  in  clearing  the  land  and  erecting 
homes,  the  settlers  were  obliged  to  turn  their  at- 
tention to  war.  The  kinsf's  demand  for  service 
was  at  the  northward,  and  was  met  with  a  ready 
response  from  the  men  of  this  new  town,  the  min- 
ister among  them. 

It  was  my  good  fortune  to  meet  in  Hollis  Mrs. 
Levi  Abbott,  at  her  attractive  home,  within  or 
near  the  limits  of  the  original  grant  to  the  minis- 
ter, her  great-grandfather.      Mrs.  Abbott  said,  — 

"  It  was  about  twelve  years  after  my  great- 
grandfather began  his  ministry  among  this  peo- 
ple that  he  felt  called  upon  to  go  into  the  army 
contending  against  the  French  and  Indians.  Con- 
sequently he  left  his  parish,  his  wife,  and  a  half- 
dozen  little  children,  and  went  to  the  northward 
as  chaplain,  in  a  regiment  commanded  by  Colonel 


Joseph  Blanchard  of  Dunstable.  He  was  absent 
about  six  months.  During  his  absence  he  kept  a 
journal,  which  is  now  treasured  in  our  family.  It 
is  styled  by  the  minister,  '  A  Journal  of  My  Pro- 
ceedings with  the  Army  to  Crown  Point.'  " 

From  the  yellow  leaves  I  have  copied  the  fol- 
lowing entries  :  — 

Jicly  ye  ^,  1755,  being  Tuesday. 

Sat  out  from  my  own  House  after  com''ng  ourselves  f 
God  by  Solemn  Pr.  in  wh.  Br.  Emerson  was  greatly  inlarged. 

Went  to  Lichfield  &  Preached  from ,  in  wh.  Exercise  I 

enjoyed  some  inlargement.  O  that  I  might  be  used  as  an 
Instrument  to  Glorify  God  !  Went  that  night  to  Gen.  Starks 
at  Derryfield  [Manchester]  where  I  was  kindly  entertained 
with  Rev.  Dr.  Cummings. 

He  preached  on  July  9,  and  then  went  on  to 
Rumford  (Concord,  N.  H.),  where  he  was  enter- 
tained by  Mrs.  Walker,  the  wife  of  the  minister, 
and  mother  of  Hon.  Thomas  Walker,  a  famous 
patriot  in  the  Revolution.  On  Friday  of  the  same 
week  he  went  under  guard  to  the  army  at  Bakers- 
town,  where  he  was  kindly  received  ''  by  ye  Col's 
of  ye  Army,"  and  began  his  service  as  chaplain. 
He  records  :  — 

"  I  lodged  in  ye  Camp  much  better  than  I  feared,  slept 
some  &  rose  refreshed  early  in  ye  morning." 

On  the  following  day  he  saw  — 

"  Need  of  more  wisdom,  zeal  &  courage  than  in  any  station 
of  life  I  have  been  placed  in." 


He  preached  twice  on  his  first  Sabbath  in  camp, 
but  found  the  soldiers  little  disposed  to  attend. 
He  notes  that  lodging  on  the  ground  was  more 
bearable  than  at  first. 

On  Monday,  July  14,  he  writes:  — 

"  I  visited  some  of  the  inhabitants  who  came  to  Stevens- 
town  while  ye  Regiment  could  protect  them.'" 

On  the  following  day  he  was  not  able  to  go  to 
prayer  with  the  regiment,  but  two  days  later  re- 
cords :  — 

"  Had  a  shock  of  ye  fever  &  ague.  Col.  Blanchard  prayed 
with  ye  Regiment ;  at  night  was  exceedingly  kind,  urged  me 
to  take  his  couch  to  lodge  in.  .  .  .  This  day  wrote  to  my 
dear  ch.  &  people." 

On  the  20th  he  made  record  of  an  order  for  the 
regiment  to  go  to  join  the  army  at  Albany,  and  on 
the  following  day,  of  his  having  leave  to  go  home. 

"  To  be  with  my  dear  family  &  people  on  the  Day  of  Fast- 
ing &  Prayer." 

He  preached  at  Suncook  and  Rumford  on  the 
way  to  Hollis,  and  recorded  that  it  was  harder  to 
2:0  from  the  sfround  to  the  bed  than  from  the  bed 
to  the  o:round.  He  reached  his  home  on  the  22d, 
when  his  record  is  :  — 

"  Almost  overcome  with  the  heat,  but  found  my  Dear 
Partner  &  children  well.  How  pleasant  it  is  &  how  great  a 
Blessinor  to  have  such  a  wife  as  God  has  crowned  me  with." 


The  following  day  was  observed  as  a  Fast 
through  the  Province.  The  minister's  parents 
came  from   Maiden  to  visit  their  son. 

On  July  30,  the  Hollis  minister  set  out  for  Al- 
bany, was  joined  by  Colonel  Blanchard,  who  ac- 
companied him  on  the  way  to  the  Hudson  River. 
They  reached  Albany  on  Tuesday,  August  12, 
when  Rev.  Mr.  Emerson  made  the  following  en- 
try :  — 

"  Found  it  a  compact  Place,  hut  ye  buildings  not  so  gay 
as  in  our  seaport  town,  tarried  there  all  night  &  the  next  day, 
but  I  wanted  to  get  to  my  Business  at  ye  Flats  6  miles  above 

He  speaks  of  being  comfortable  on  his  armful 
of  straw. 

August  24  was  Sunday,  and  this  chaplain 
preached  to  soldiers  on  both  sides  of  the  river. 
On  the  following  day  he  dined  with  Colonel 
Schuylerl  Illness  seems  to  have  followed  him, 
but  he  prayed  four  times  each  day.  He  divided 
his  service  between  the  troops  lodged  on  either 
side  of  the  river. 

In  the  early  days  of  September  he  records  :  — 

"  I  saw  some  Indians  who  sang  and  danced  in  a  very  odd 
manner  as  did  some  before.  Yy  are  pitiful  looking  crea- 
tures.    I  pitied  Mr.  Braynard  and  honored  his  memory  more 

1  Colonel  Schuyler  was  made  a  general  by  Washington  in  the 
Revolution,  and  in  command  of  Provincial  forces  in  New  York 
for  a  time. 


yn  ever  w"  I  saw  ye  poor  People  W"  he  had  spent  his  life 
among.  Some  told  me  yt  some  of  Mr.  Bray"ard's  Indians 
\vr  among  those  I  saw.'' 

His  journal  continues  with  details  of  the  jour- 
ney, a  skirmish  with  the  French  and  Indians,  and 
on  September  19  he  writes  from  Lake  George  to 
his  wife.     In  this  letter  he  says  :  — 

"  If  you  could  by  a  window  look  into  my  heart  I  believe 
you  would  find  that  you  possessed  as  much  of  me  as  ever 
woman  did  of  any  man's  heart  on  earth."" 

This  letter,  penned  one  hundred  and  forty  years 
ago  by  the  patriot  preacher  of  Hollis,  is  carefully 
treasured  by  his  great-granddaughter.  There  is  a 
family  tradition  that  the  letter  was  sent  from  Lake 
George  to  Hollis  on  the  neck  of  a  faithful  dog 
that  the  minister  had  taken  with  him  from  his 
home  for  that  purpose. 

It  is  said  that  when  Rev.  Mr.  Emerson  was  at 
Crown  Point,  and  his  regiment  was  ordered  to 
present  arms  for  inspection,  he  presented  his  Bible 
to  the  officer  as  his  weapon. 

At  the  opening  of  the  Revolution  the  Hollis 
minister  was  about  sixty  years  of  age,  and  he  did 
not  enter  the  army;  but  his  patriotic  spirit  had 
been  duly  impressed  upon  his  people  and  family. 
His  son  Daniel  was  captain  of  the  Hollis  company, 
and  went  to  Ticonderoga  in  July,  1776,  and  was 
also  captain  of   a   company  enlisted    in   Hollis  in 


June  of  the  following  year.  In  1778  he  was  in 
command  of  a  mounted  company  which  went  to 
Rhode  Island,  and  also  of  a  company  in  Colonel 
Mooney's  regiment,  raised  in  1779  for  the  defence 
of  Rhode  Island. 

In  the   old   burying-ground    in    Hollis   may   be 
seen  a  slab  on  which  is  chiselled  the  following:  — 


He  was  born  at  Reading,  Mass.,  May  20,  1716.     Grad- 
uated at   Harvard  University  1739,  and  was  ordained  April  20, 
1743,   *°   *^^    Pastoral    care   of    the   church    and    congregation     in 
Hollis  which  then  consisted  of  only  30    Families.     He  was  an  honest 
man,  given  to  Hospitality.     An  affectionate  Husband,  and  tender 
Parent.     A  faithful  friend  and  patriotic  citizen.     An  Evangeli- 
cal,  zealous    and    unusually    successful    Preacher    of    the 
Gospel  of  Jesus  Christ.     Highly  esteemed  by  his  people, 
his  praise  was  in  all  the  churches,     a.d.  1793  ^^^ 

voluntarily  relinquished  one-half  his  salary  to 

promote  the  settlement  of  a  colleague.     From  which 

time   his    pious    walk   and    occasional    labors   evinced    an 

unabating   love   for   the   cause    of   Christ,  until   nature   failed 

and  he  fell  asleep  in  Jesus 

September  30,  1801,  Aged  85  Years. 

here  are  also  deposited  the  remains  of 
w^ife  of  the  above 
And  Daughter  of  Rev.  Joseph  Emerson  of  Malden, 
She    lived   a  pattern  of   filial   obedience,  respect    and 
affection,  and  an  example  of    conjugal   love  and  duty  ;  a 
most  tender  indulgent  and  faithful  Parent.     The  delight  of  her  Friends 
and  ornament  of   the  Church.       She  lived  the  life  of  a  true   Dis- 
ciple of  Christ.      In  the  constant  exercise  of  active   faith  in 
His  promise.    And  died  in  triumphant  hope  of  everlasting 
life  in  those  Regions  where  charity  never  faileth 
February  28,  1812,  aged  90. 


Rev.  Joseph  Emerson  was  settled  as  the  first 
minister  of  Pepperell,  Mass.,  in  1746.  He  re- 
ceived, as  did  the  Hollis  minister,  an  allotment  of 
forty  acres  of  land,  on  which  he  built  a  house. 

He  was  longer  in  becoming  established  in  a 
home  of  his  own  than  was  his  brother-in-law,  Rev. 
Daniel  Emerson.  His  journal,  now  in  the  posses- 
sion of  a  descendant,  shows  the  occasion  of  the 
delay  with  many  interesting  facts. 

Tuesday,  Sept.  6,  1748.  Set  out  for  Connecticut  in  com- 
pany with  Peter  Powers  of  Hollis  in  order  to  go  to  New  Haven 

His  journey  and  visits  by  the  way  occupied  the 
time  until  the  14th,  when  he  notes  :  — 

Commencement,  all  things  were  carried  on  with  the  utmost 
decency.     They  come  very  little  behind  Cambridge  itself. 

TJuirsday.,  15th.  Breakfast  at  College  &  set  out  for  home 
in  company  with  Mr.  Ellis  of  Middletown  &  arrived  at  his 
house  in  the  evening  about  34  miles. 

He  remained  there  and  at  Weathersfield  until 
the  17th,  when  he  resumed  his  journey  in  company 
with  Rev.  Jonathan  Edwards  of  Northampton. 
They  halted  at  Hartford,  called  at  Windsor  upon 
the  father  of  Rev.  Mr.  Edwards,  who  was  also  a 
minister,  and  reached  Northampton  on  Tuesday. 

While  here.  Rev.  Mr.  Emerson  met  with  Esther, 
the  daughter  of  Rev.  Jonathan  Edwards.  On  the 
21st  he  makes  the  following  entry  :  — 


Spent  the  day  very  pleasantly,  the  most  agreeable  family 
I  was  ever  acquainted  with,  much  of  the  presence  of  God 
here.  We  met  with  Mr.  Spencer,  a  gentleman  who  was  or- 
dained last  week  at  Boston,  as  a  missionary  to  the  Indians  of 
the  Six  Nations.  He  purposes  to  set  out  to-morrow  for 
Albany.  The  most  wonderful  instance  of  self  denial  I  ever 
met  with. 

After  taking  leave  of  the  minister  who  was  on 
the  way  to  Albany  as  a  foreign  missionary,  the 
homeward  journey  was  continued. 

When  back  in  his  lodgings,  the  Pepperell  min- 
ister records : — 

Have  not  met  with  any  difficulty  in  travelling  about  300 
miles.     God's  name  be  praised. 

After  four  busy  days  in  parish  work  and  atten- 
tion to  his  mother,  who  had  come  to  visit  her 
daughter  at  Hollis  and  son  at  Pepperell,  he  re- 
cords :  — 

Sat.,  Oct.  I.  I  wrote  two  letters  in  the  forenoon,  one  to 
Mr.  Edwards  of  Northampton,  and  the  other  to  his  second 
daughter,  a  very  desirable  person  to  whom  I  purpose  by 
divine  leave  to  make  my  addresses.  May  the  Lord  direct 
me  in  so  important  affair. 

Monday,  3.  Set  out  with  my  mother  for  Maiden.  Dined 
at  Col.  Ting's  »&  got  as  far  as  Reading.  Lodged  at  Capt. 

After  four  weeks  spent  in  "journeyings  often," 
like  Saint  Paul,  and  in  close  application  to  paro- 
chial work,  together  with  some  time  spent  in  cut- 
ting corn-stalks,  the  parson  records  :  — 


Monday,  Nov.  7.  Set  out  some  time  before  day  on  a 
journey  to  Northampton  to  visit  Mrs.  (Miss)  Estlier  Ed- 
wards ^  to  treat  of  marriage. 

A  subsequent  record  shows  that  the  journey  was 
performed  in  safety,  but  the  hopeful  parson  adds, — 

I  could  not  obtain  from  the  young  lady  tlie  least  encour- 
agement to  come  again.  The  chief  objection  she  makes  is 
her  youth,  which  I  hope  will  be  removed  in  time. 

Months  elapsed,  and  the  young  minister  was 
compelled  to  abandon  his  fondest  hope.  He 
passed  through  the  sentimental  Gethsemane  with 
true  Christian  fortitude,  yet  not  without  apparent 
mental  and  physical  suffering,  and  at  length  mar- 
ried Abigail  Hay  of  Reading.  The  minister  with 
his  bride  opened  the  doors  of  their  home  to  the 
people  of  his  early  choice. 

I  have  shown  in  Chapter  IV.  that  Rev.  Joseph 
Emerson,  the  patriot  preacher  of  Pepperell,  was 
chaplain  in  the  expedition  to  Louisburg,  preached 
plainly  of  the  duty  of  patriots  during  the  French 
troubles,  took  a  bold  stand  at  the  opening  of  the 
Revolution,  and  died  a  patriot's  death,  October  29, 
1775,  at  the  age  of  fifty-one  years. 

Rev.  William  Emerson  married  Phoebe  Bliss,  a 
daughter  of  his  predecessor  in  the  Concord  min- 

1  Miss  Esther  Edwards  became  the  wife  of  Aaron  Burr,  the 
president  of  Princeton  College,  and  was  the  mother  of  Aaron 
Burr,  the  third  vice-president  of  the  United  States,  —  a  man  of 
unpleasant   memory. 


istry.  They  established  their  home  at  the  Manse, 
and  spent  a  few  years  in  the  enjoyment  of  the 
entire  confidence  of  their  people,  and  in  devotion 
to  each  other  and  their  children. 

This  Concord  minister  was  a  brave  and  deter- 
mined "  Son  of  Liberty."  Bancroft  has  recorded 
as  testimony  given  him  by  veterans  of  that  day's 
experience  that  at  the  early  morning  alarm,  rung 
out  by  Amos  Melvin,  the  sentinel  at  the  Court 
House,  the  minister  turned  out  with  the  others 
"his  gun  in  hand."  The  school-boy's  first  lesson 
in  the  history  of  Concord  fight  has  contained  the 
old  story  that  the  minister  of  the  town  was  one 
of  those  who  rashly  advised  that  the  early  morn- 
ing force  should  stand  its  ground  on  the  Common 
and  abide  the  attack,  but  more  experienced  mili- 
tary men  overruled  in  the  excitement  of  the  hour. 
Additional  testimony  has  come  from  a  non-resi- 
dent, who,  working  in  Concord,  was  enrolled  with 
the  minute-men.  He  said  he  felt  he  could  not 
stand  when  he  saw  the  redcoats  come  in  sight, 
but  was  quieted  and  put  in  courage  by  Mr.  Emer- 
son's brave  words,  and  hand  laid  on  his  shoulder. 

The  above  should  not  be  construed  as  conflict- 
ing with  the  words  of  a  famous  author,  quoted  in 
chapter  ix.  of  "Beneath  Old  Roof  Trees  "  —  they 
refer  to  different  hours  of  the  day.  From  the 
family  narrative  we  learn  that  when  the  Provin- 
cials retreated  from  the  village  to  the  opposite 
side  of  the  river,  followed  by  the  British,  many 


women  and  children  took  refuge  in  the  yard  of 
the  Manse  ;  and  as  the  minister's  wife  and  little 
children  were  in  the  house  with  no  protector  but 
an  excited  black  man-servant  (former  slave),  his 
duty  was  plain,  and  he  stayed,  as  a  faithful  minis- 
ter would,  to  protect  his  family,  and  comfort  the 
crowd  of  helpless  parishioners. 

May  not  the  expression,  *'  Had  not  the  friends 
around  him  prevented  his  quitting  his  doorstep," 
be  a  poet's  account  of  the  demands  of  a  dis- 
tressed people  for  the  service  and  protection  of 
their  pastor  ?  These  duties  caused  the  minister 
to  be  late  at  the  river ;  but  an  official,  who  came 
a  few  days  later  to  look  over  the  ground,  has 
recorded,  ''  He  saw  all  that  went  on,  and  at  first 
was  afraid  his  people  would  get  excited  and  fire 
first,  and  after  the  British  volley  he  feared  they 
might  not  return  it."  After  the  enemy  fell  back 
from  the  bridge,  Mr.  Emerson  went  there,  and 
was  shocked  at  findins:  the  soldier  whom  an  over- 
zealous  boy,  seeing  him  striving  to  rise,  had  cut  in 
the  head  with  a  hatchet. 

We  are  indebted  to  the  Rev.  Mr.  Emerson's 
journal  for  the  account  of  the  proceedings  of 
April  19,  1775,  as  they  impressed  him.  His 
record  has  been  the  foundation  of  the  most  re- 
liable narrative  of  the  battle  on  Concord  soil. 
The  same  preacher  has  given  us  a  vivid  descrip- 
tion of  the  camp  at  Cambridge  during  the  siege. 
(See  "  Beneath  Old  Roof  Trees,"  p.  73.) 


Rev.  William  Emerson  was  of  that  class  of 
which  Bancroft  wrote,  "  Eloquent  and  accom- 
plished chaplains  kept  alive  the  habit  of  daily 
prayer,  and  preached  the  wonted  sermons  on  the 
day  of  the  Lord." 

Writing  from  the  camp  to  his  wife  at  Concord, 
Mr,  Emerson  said,  — 

"  There  are  many  things  amiss  in  this  camp,  yet  upon  the 
whole,  God  is  in  the  midst  of  us." 

On  another  occasion  he  wrote:  — 

"  I  despair  seeing  a  battle  fought  this  time  coming  down." 

While  in  service  in  the  northern  campaign  in 
1776,  Rev.  Mr.  Emerson's  health  failed,  and  he 
addressed  the  followins:  letter  to  the  commandin«c 
officer  :  — 

TiCONDEROGA,  Sept.  lO,  \jj6. 
Sir,  —  My  111  State  of  Health  is  such  that  I  am  not  able 
to  perform  the  Duty  of  a  Chaplain,  and  am  advised  by  the 
Physicians  to  ask  for  a  dismission  from  the  Army,  and  shall 
be  glad  of  your  consent  and  assistance  thereto. 

Wm.  Emerson. 
To  Lt.  Collo.  B.  Brown. 

The  Reverend  Mr.  William  Emerson  has  my  Discharge 
from  the  Northern  Army  of  the  United  States  of  America. 
Tyconderoga,  loth  Septcjuber,  1776. 

Horatio  Gates, 
Major  General. 

The  above  letters  are  in  the  possession  of  the 
Emerson  family  at  Concord. 


Mr.  Emerson  started  for  home,  reached  Rut- 
land, Vermont,  and  died  there  on  October,  20, 
1776.  His  body  was  interred  with  the  honors  of 
war  by  a  detachment  of  Colonel  Vandyke's  Regi- 
ment, commanded  by  Major  Shepard. 

There  is  a  table  monument  on  Burying  Ground 
Hill,  Concord,  on  which  the  following  is  read  :  — 



Who  DIED  AT  Rutland,  Vt.,  1776,  /E.  y-,^  on  his   return   from 

THE  American  Army  of  which  he  was  Chaplain. 

Enthusiastic,  eloquent, 

Affectionate  and  pious. 

He  loved  his  family,  his  people, 

His  God,  and  his  country,  and  to  this  last 

He  yielded  the  cheerful  sacrifice  of  his  life. 

Rev.  John  Emerson  was  two  years  younger 
than  William,  and  did  not  make  his  advent  to  the 
Maiden  parsonage  until  Joseph  had  attained  his 
majority.  He  was  settled  as  the  first  minister 
of  Conway,  in  Franklin  County,  in  1769.  He 
had  formed  an  attachment  for  a  most  estimable 
young  lady  in  Boston  before  he  had  completed  his 
studies;  and  when  called  to  the  new  town  in  the 
wilderness,  the  brave  Sabra  Cobb  went  with  him. 
The  journey  was  made  on  horseback.  They  were 
married  in  Boston  in  1770.  It  required  moral 
heroism  for  a  young  lady  to  leave  the  society  of 
the  seaport  town,  and  go  to  that  distant  settle- 
ment, where  the  people   were  doing  the  work  of 

364         ■     BESIDE    OLD   HEARTHSTONES 

pioneers.  Within  a  week  after  she  reached  Con- 
way, she  saw  a  bear  looking  into  her  bedroom 
window.  The  young  preacher,  in  writing  of  him- 
self, said  it  was  literally  John  preaching  in  the 

The  rustic  people  had  prejudices  to  overcome, 
and  it  was  a  trying  time  for  both  parties.  But 
the  minister's  wife  soon  endeared  herself  to  the 
people,  who  admitted  that  she  was  a  lady  "if  she 
came  from  Boston."  One  act  shows  her  to  have 
been  a  judicious,  sacrificing  woman.  She  was  the 
possessor  of  a  silk  umbrella.  Such  a  thing  was  not 
owned  by  the  people  of  Conway  ;  and  rather  than 
give  them  occasion  for  jealousy,  or  have  the  ap- 
pearance of  being  in  any  way  above  the  women 
of  the  town,  Mrs.  Emerson  never  carried  the  um- 
brella, but  long  after  made  the  silk  into  bonnets 
for  her  daughters. 

We  find  that  the  Conway  minister  had  an  expe- 
rience during  the  Revolution  very  different  from 
that  of  his  brothers  in  their  parishes. 

Rev.  Daniel  Emerson  had  some  noted  Loyalists 
in  Hollis,  and  Rev.  William  Emerson  had  one  in 
his  own  family,  Daniel  Bliss,  Esq. ;  but  Rev.  John 
of  Conway  had  a  large  number  who  adhered  to 
the  king,  and  were  most  reluctant  to  fall  in  with 
the  patriots.  In  dealing  \yith  these  Loyalists,  or 
Tories,  the  young  minister  of  Conway  was  se- 
verely tried.  The  following  votes,  passed  during 
the  Revolutionary  times,  serve  to  show  the  process 


used  against  those  who  were  not  in  sympathy  with 
the  American  cause  :  — 

At  a  legal  meeting  held  June  25.  1777,  — 

Voted,  To  try  the  minds  of  the  town  with  regard  to  the 
enimical  persons  that  the  Selectmen  have  entered  in  a  list 
and  laid  before  the  town  as  such  separately. 

After  giving  the  list  of  Loyalists,  they  — 

Voted.  That  Captain  Alexander  Oliver  be  the  person  to 
collect  the  evidence,  and  lay  it  before  the  court  against  the 
above  enimical  persons. 

The  meeting-house  where  Rev.  John  Emerson 
preached  on  the  Sabbath  was  the  place  where  the 
following  peculiar  action  was  taken  :  — 

At  a  legal  meeting  held  August  27th,  1777,— 

Voted,  That  we  proceed  in  some  measure  to  secure  the 
enimical  persons  called  Tories  among  us.  Then  the  ques- 
tion was  put,  whether  we  would  draw  a  line  between  the 
Continent  and  Great  Britain. 

Voted  in  the  affirmative. 

Voted,  That  all  those  porsons  that  stand  on  tlie  side  of 
the  Continent,  take  up  arms  and  go  hand  in  hand  with  us 
in  carrying  on  the  war  against  our  unnatural  enemies,  such 
we  receive  as  friends,  and  all  others  treat  as  enemies. 

Voted,  That  the  broad  alley  be  a  line,  and  the  south  end 
of  the  meeting-house  be  the  Continent  side,  and  the  north 
end  be  the  British  side;  then  moved  for  trial,  and  found  6 
persons  to  stand  on  the  British  side.   .    .   . 

Voted  to  set  a  guard  ov.:r  those  enimical  persons. 

Voted,  The  town  clerk  immediately  desire  Judge  Mather 
to  issue  out  his  warrants  against  those  enimical  persons  re- 
turned to  him  in  a  list  heretofore. 


The  Conway  minister  survived  the  war,  and  lived 
to  enjoy  the  blessings  of  liberty  for  many  years. 
He  saw  the  settlement  in  the  wilderness  grow 
from  four  hundred  to  two  thousand  inhabitants. 

Rev.  John  Emerson  kept  a  journal,  as  did  the 
other  Emerson  preachers,  and  the  ministers  of  the 
time  generally.  While  these  journals  treat  largely 
of  private  matters,  they  also  serve  to  show  that 
ministerial  association  was  promoted  by  inter- 
change of  visits,  and  that  the  parsonages  (min- 
isters' homes)  of  New  England  were  hostleries 
where  entertainment  was  freely  dispensed.  The 
Conway  minister's  record  of  a  journey  to  Bos- 
ton in    1799  ^s  of  interest. 

May  23.  Set  out  on  a  journey  to  Boston  ...  to  consult 
on  the  present  critical  and  alarming  state  of  our  country  and 
to  devise  means  for  the  suppression  of  infidelity.  Rode  this 
day  as  far  as  Greenwich,  dined  at  Mr.  Parson's  of  Amherst, 
and  lodged  at  Capt.  Rich's  in  Greenwich. 

24th.  Proceeded  on  my  journey,  dined  at  Mr.  Avery's  in 
Holden  (Rev.  Joseph  Avery  the  minister),  and  reached  Har- 
vard.    Lodged  at  Dea.  Whitney's. 

25th.  Rose  early,  breakfasted  at  my  kinsman's,  Mr.  Emer- 
son's ^  and  went  on  as  far  as  Concord  by  noon. 

1  Rev.  William  Emerson,  pastor  at  Harvard  from  1792  to  1799, 
was  son  of  Rev.  William  of  Concord,  and  a  nephew  of  Rev.  John, 
who  made  this  visit  just  at  the  time  when  the  First  Church  in 
Boston  was  offering  inducements  to  the  Harvard  pastor  to  exchange 
his  country  parish  for  the  more  popular  one  at  the  seaport.  He 
did  this  in  the  autumn  of  1799,  and  a  Boston  parsonage,  instead  of 
that  at  Harvard,  first  echoed  the  voice  of  the  boy  Ralph  Waldo 

THE   MIA  VS  TER  'S  JO  URNE  Y  367 

Rev.  John  Emerson  continues  his  record  :  — 

I  was  persuaded,  contrary  to  my  intention,  to  stay  with 
Brother  Ripley  over  the  Sahbath. 

26th,  Lord's  Day.  Preached  for  Mr.  Ripley.  Had  some 
freedom  and  satisfaction  in  the  public  service  of  the  day. 
Preached  to  the  acceptance  of  many,  and  1  hope  some  bene- 
fit." [This  visit  at  Concord  was  at  the  parsonage,  "  Old 
Manse/' and  upon  his  brother's  widow  Phoebe  (Bliss)  Emer- 
son, who  had  become  the  wife  of  Rev.  Ezra  Ripley,  the  suc- 
cessor of  his  brother,  the  patriot  preacher  of  Concord.] 

27th.  Set  out  early  from  Concord,  and  took  breakfast 
at  Dr.  Osgood's  in  Medford  (the  minister's),  and  arrived  at 
Maiden  in  safety,  after  a  pleasant  and  prosperous  journey. 
Found  my  sisters  well,  and  living  together  in  harmony,  which 
afforded  me  much  satisfaction. 

On  June  13  he  set  out  for  home.  Dined  at 
Concord,  drank  coffee  at  Harvard,  and  proceeded 
to  Boylston.  Lodged  with  Mr.  Nash,  the  minis- 
ter, and  so  on  until  he  reached  Conway. 

In  the  old  burying-ground  of  Conway  may  be 
seen  a  gravestone  erected  by  loving  hands,  on 
which  may  be  read  :  — 



Who  was  Born  at  Mali^en,  Nov.  20.  1745, 

Was  Settled  to  the  Work  of  the  Ministry  in  Conway 

July  20,  1769. 

&   having   preached  the  Gospel  fifty-seven   years. 

He  died  June  26,  1826, 

In  the  Sist  year  of  his  age. 

"  PerfiidcDi  ct  Laborem  ad  Caelum  ascettdity 

"  He  ascends  to  heaven  through  faithfulness  and  labor." 


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